Compulsive hoarding is a mental disorder that is just beginning to be understood. As a hoarder, I have acquired things over the years with a specific purpose in mind at the time of the acquisition, used some of those items for their intended purposes, forgotten the goal for different objects, but now that I find that they have outlived their purpose in my life I am struggling to rid myself of those same things.

You can read the start of my journey here.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Cheers!

So. My final post of the year. Wow. I can't believe 2010 has come to an end.


In many ways, I'm going to miss 2010. It's been a good year. A really good year, even. It's been full of struggles, full of honesty, reflection and self realization, full of hard work and full of hope and the additions to our family of Bubster and Frank when Bugster and Bubster wed back in April and they took guardianship of Frank over the summer. 

How can I not miss it?


It's been a good year.


But I am so full of hope for 2011 and what it holds in store for our family, that I will gladly bid this year adieu.

In spite of having an infection in my incision wound, I'm feeling quite well. I'm so thankful that I had the surgery. I'm already wishing I'd done it years ago. I am hoping that it will make the difference in my health that I'm thinking it's going to make. 


Last year, I was at my heaviest weight of all time, having taken 6 or 7 courses of steroids after coming down with the swine flu. I was sick all winter. I eventually lost 15 of the 30 pounds I'd gained due to the steroids, but when I came home from surgery, I'd gained the 15 pounds back from the swelling and fluid retention I was experiencing. I wondered, if it was going to take another year to lose it.


It didn't.


Unlike most women who gain weight after a hysterectomy, I have somehow beat the odds so far. I lost the 15 pounds I brought home from the hospital plus an additional 15 pounds. And in spite of the fact that I still have over 100 pounds to lose, I'm 30 pounds closer to my goal and the least I've weighed in 3 years. It gives me hope that I will eventually be successful at losing the weight just like I'm going to eventually finish dehoarding and organizing my home.


I am confident that 2011 is going to be a wonderful continuation of the journey I started January 9, 2010


In the meantime, we'll be wrapping up 2010 in a couple of hours. About 30 minutes from now, I'll wake up Hopper, Scooter and Mom (We're still blessed with her company due to a storm that moved in yesterday! We're thrilled!), so we can ring in the New Year together. 


We'll be enjoying our annual New Year's fondue. We'll be fixing chicken, beef and Inside Out Cheeseburgers, and we'll enjoy fresh broccoli, cauliflower, carrots and celery with a Ranch dip made with Greek yogurt instead of sour cream along with cheese and crackers. Once we're done eating, we'll toast with sparkling cider and watch the big ball drop while calling loved ones at the stroke of midnight to wish them Happy New Year. To top things off, it looks like The Hubster will even be able to join us this year!


Oh. You're wondering what Inside Out Cheeseburgers are. 

I understand. 

They're a fun fondue food and taste amazing. They're made by whisking up a couple of eggs and adding whatever spices you wish to use. I just use a little pepper and garlic salt. Add the lean ground beef, (it holds together better in the hot oil than turkey burger) and bread crumbs and mix it together until it's fairly dry but not crumbly. 


Form a ball using 1 to 2 tablespoons of the burger mixture and push a hole down into the center of the ball. Insert a piece of cheese in the hole. I've used Velveeta before, but it disintegrates in oil too easily and seeps out. So use something harder. This year I'm trying Colby Jack cheese, although I may try cheddar next year depending on how things turn out tonight. Anyway, you finish them off by rolling them in breadcrumbs, because they hold together better that way and cook them in your fondue pot until done, which will vary depending on the size. 


So there you have it. We're going to have fun tonight. I had an amazing 2010 filled with both ups and downs but an awful lot of growth and loss. And I'm going to embrace 2011 for all it's worth.


May each of you have an amazing New Year every day of 2011 and be blessed beyond measure! 


Here's to you. To me. To us. 


Cheers!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Progress.

Not sure where to start.  

Things are going well, though.

The pod on the driveway? 

It's not there anymore. It was picked up last Wednesday. We are all so very thankful it's gone, and of course the neighbors are thrilled! The yard, the entire street, even, looks so much bigger with that thing gone! And do you have any idea how wonderful it is to be able to park in the driveway for the first time in 20 months? Let's just say we'll never take it for granted again. 


Last week, Mom helped me go through 20 boxes in the basement. Of the 20 boxes we sorted through, I only kept 4, and I'll eventually be going through them again and getting rid of more stuff. I just didn't want to take the time to do it now. Too much going on. So, like I said, Mom helped me sort through 20 boxes. I kept 4. For now. I'm looking forward to being well enough to sort through the rest of the boxes downstairs. 


I feel like I'm healing well. I feel well most days and had gotten to the point I wasn't needing the stronger pain medicines like I had early on. Then I wasn't thinking and was pushing the shopping cart this weekend when The Hubster and I were shopping. I was doing fine until I tried turning a corner. I felt it then and I'm still feeling it tonight. I haven't done much of anything yesterday or today. I'm trying to take it really easy, so I  can heal up from it, but it really irritated me that I did it without even thinking about things.


I really am feeling well overall, though. Much better than I expected to feel, and much, much better than I did after I had my c-sections. I am thrilled I had the surgery, and I'd do it again in a heartbeat. I just need to stay away from the shopping carts for awhile, so I don't overdo. I can do that. 

I'll be here sporadically while Mom is still visiting. I've never felt like I've gotten enough time with my parents as an adult, because we've always lived so far apart. Now that Mom's here, I want to spend every moment I can with her. It's been amazing having her here, and we're making lifelong memories. I want to be present for them, so I can store them in my heart.

So. That's what's going on in my life. I'll be back as I can. 


I hope each and every one of you is doing well!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

An early Christmas.

I am ever so glad it was warm outside today. Well. Warm for Colorado in December. It was in the 50s, and we needed every degree of warmth possible to complete our task, plus the space heater, but complete it we did.

The. Storage. Pod. Is. Empty.

My mother and my husband did the vast majority of the leg work with a little help from Hopper. We thought of hiring Frank the last couple of hours to help out. I wish we'd have thought of it sooner. It was a great investment, and he was a huge help. 


Our basement holds most of the contents of the pod at this point, but it does not feel like it will be impossible to get through the boxes, even though they take up a large portion of the family room. It's going to take awhile to get through the crafts and get them sorted. There's a lot of crafts, and while I have quite the craft area I will not have room for everything, so I will be paring down as I go along. I think it's going to be a case of "easier said than done," but I refuse to be intimidated. I will get through it.

I meant to take pictures in the pod before we started unloading, but it's just as well I didn't. By the time we finally finished, I felt like a Popsicle I was so cold, and I doubt my fingers would have been able to operate the buttons on a camera. Now that everything is inside, I'll make sure I get pictures before I start going through boxes tomorrow.

I know we have a lot of games that we'd gotten for the girls over the years, but realistically, I know we won't be using them all, and many of them are still brand new. I want to go through them, get out the ones I don't think the girls will use, and donate them to one of the local toy drives in time for Christmas. Hopefully, they'll bring smiles to a few faces this Season.

I'm exhausted tonight from my role in today's adventure. I didn't lift anything. I left that up to The Hubster and Mom. However, I stood in the pod for the 5 hours it took us to go through and delegated. The craft boxes went on one side of the family room. The games, toys, and other boxes that are going to require a bit more time to sort went on the other side. The books all went in the workout room. 


Speaking of books, The Hubster was in shock when we came across 13 more boxes of books after he thought he'd already moved all the boxes down to the workout room. He's positive he's not going to be able to fit them all on the bookshelves we have ready for him to use. He's looking at paring down, too.


Emptying the pod today has been an eye-opening experience. It's made us very much aware of what it is that we struggle with hoarding, and it's made us very much aware that we do not want to continue down the path we'd chosen. We no longer choose to go down that road. 


We've decided to take a detour that will lead us to our real lives. 


Merry Christmas to us.

Just checkin in...

I'm feeling much better than I expected to feel 11 days post-op. I am just so relieved to have the surgery out of the way and to be feeling the way I am. I definitely feel better than I did at this point in the recovery after my c-sections, so I'm quite happy about that.

When I went in to get the staples out last week, I asked the doctor, if it was okay for me to go through the boxes that The Hubster was bringing in from the pod on the driveway. She said that it was as long as I rested, if I felt tired. So I've been sorting and resting as needed. I've gotten through quite a bit so far, and I couldn't be happier.

We're about halfway through the pod at this point. Things have either been tossed in the trash, cleaned for donation, set aside for someone else, or kept for our use. So far, we're keeping very little except the craft stuff. And we're on such a roll that decisions are coming easier for me all the time. 

We're about halfway through the pod at this time. Tomorrow, we're going to get it emptied. We want it off the driveway. Granted, that means we'll have to put what remains where it will fit, and it will take up quite a bit of room downstairs and in the garage, but I'll continue to work on sorting as many boxes as possible, so we can get the basement cleared as quickly as we can. 


We're hoping to completely clean the pod out tomorrow and call the company on Monday to come and pick it up. The company has up to a week after we call to pick it up. That being the case, we will be able to park in the driveway before Christmas! We are SO thrilled with that! The driveway is going to look so naked once it's gone. 


That's okay.


Nudity has it's place.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Tea, anyone?

I'm exhausted but thrilled tonight. I'm feeling much better today. Almost human, even.

Three dear friends have provided 5 meals for us over the last 4 days. We'll be heating up one that was left at our door this morning tomorrow for dinner. It looks wonderful, and it's such a huge blessing! I have some absolutely amazing friends!

Hopper and Scooter were sick all last week, and they were still sick over the weekend, so they missed school again today. I know that it hit poor Hopper the hardest, because of the amount of stress she's been under with me going in for surgery. Now that she sees me feeling better, she's starting to feel better. They'll be going back to school tomorrow. They're excited and ready to go.


This afternoon, I was feeling well enough that I asked The Hubster to help me out in the pod. He helped me by getting boxes down and letting me peak in them, so I'd know whether or not I'd be able to do a quick sorting on them. He ended up taking 7 boxes downstairs for me to sort, and there's no evidence that they were even brought in. 

Thankfully, Mom was here when I went through the box of tea party stuff. It was nice to be able to bounce thoughts off her, and it made it easier to make decisions I knew needed making but couldn't bring myself to make. First out of the box were some acrylic stemmed glasses the girls had used to toast during the different tea parties we had when they were growing up. Because I am fairly certain they contain BPA, and I'm not willing to take the chance with the girls using them, I threw them in the trash. We'll come across something else eventually. Something that will be perfect and safe for them to use.


The box had 4 brand new tea dish sets in it, too. They were adorable, and they were once the girls had used when they were little, but they've been boxed up since we moved 9.5 years ago. They were returned to their original boxes after our tea parties, so the china wouldn't break, chip or crack. I wasn't sure what to do with them. They were gifts from Mom and Dad, and they were special.


But the news stories from the last several years kept nagging at me in the back of my mind. You know. Those stories about how China had laced toys of all sorts that were to be sold in the USA with lead. So we looked at all 4 sets of tea party dishes, and low and behold, they were all made in China. I was surprised to even find a label on the end of one box that said that it was not to be used as a toy nor for food service. Who makes a set of tea party dishes that's not supposed to be used as tea party dishes?


Mom gave her blessing for me to get rid of them. She agreed that it wasn't worth the risk to Hopper and Scooter's health to keep them around. So they're gone. It's such a relief to know that the decision has been made. It would have been a very hard decision for me to have made on my own. Thanks to Mom, I was able to make a very difficult decision that would have had me stumbling around for weeks. 


A couple of boxes had old photo albums or paper in them. I saved the albums that had no pictures in them or that had none, but I really liked. The rest went in a box to go to the thrift store. I saved all the paper for now. We won't have to buy theme paper for the next 20 years, I'm sure, but it will all eventually get used, whether by Hopper and Scooter or by Frank, Bugster or Bubster for school.

I also found my stash of construction paper that I'd always had dreams of using with the girls, lots of scrap paper that I currently have put up with the construction paper, but that I'm willing to donate to the girls' classrooms, and a bunch of scrap booking supplies that I look forward to using eventually. It is so nice for it to finally be in it's place!


When all was said and done, I ended up with 1 huge black bag of trash, 5 empty boxes, 1 box of paperwork that I'll have to get to sorting later, and 1 box that will be going to a charity thrift store. 

While I was sorting through the boxes, Mom worked on sorting the laundry and worked in the laundry room. And while it looks like the family room just threw up several bushel baskets full of clothes, the majority of the laundry room floor can be seen for the first time in years. I'm thrilled. We can't wait to get started on things tomorrow!



I'll still be taking it easy, and we'll stop for the breaks along the way, but I feel very hopeful that we may actually able to get this pod emptied and the craft area stocked. 


So am I tired tonight? Absolutely. But I'm also thrilled beyond anything at the blessing the last few days have held.






Sunday, December 5, 2010

My apologies for this time warped string of drug-induced incoherency.

So. If you ever have surgery, your incision is rather long, and they give you the option of having a 'pain ball' make sure you take them up on the offer. It makes a huge difference. It dispenses a numbing agent along the entire incision, and it works for several days. I would do it again in a heartbeat. I almost wish I hadn't had to take it out today, but those were the doctor's orders.

I didn't realize the full extent of the usefulness of the thing until the numbing agent wore off within a couple hours of it being removed. I'll just say I'm in more pain than I was and leave it like that. I'm really hoping a good night's sleep in my own bed tonight. I'm tempted to sleep in the recliner, but I don't think I'll be any more comfortable in the recliner than in my bed, so I may as well go where I can really stretch out tonight. 

I can't describe how frustrating it's been to not be able to do anything to help out. I'm having a rough time with it, especially since I was having a hard time slowing down before I went in for surgery. I am hoping I'll be able to step up and work on things soon.

Bugster, Hubster, Frank and Hopper all put up the Nativity Scene that we use every year outside. I always love how it looks. It was a nice surprise to have it done when I came home from the hospital yesterday. It will be really nice, if we can get the Christmas decorations and tree up tomorrow. I know the girls would be thrilled. Plus it's not like I'll be able to move and stretch to put up the decorations, so the timing would be good, if we can get it up while I still have help with it. So it's the priority for tomorrow.

The medicine funk I've been in is interesting. Bugster and I were talking on the phone while I was still in the hospital. She asked me something, and being hopped up on pain medicines I answered in the only way I knew how at the time.
 
I told her she'd better not break up the checkerboard.

I have no idea where that came from, but I got poor Bugster to worrying. She ended up calling her dad, The Hubster, to ask, if I was okay. He assured I was indeed fine, but that I was loopy on pain meds. Ugh. I can't stand that.

I have no idea how coherent this post will end up being when I'm done with it, but at least I can cover the slurred words by typing. 

Hoping to post some pictures tomorrow. 

Right now, I need to go to sleep. I'm wiping up keyboard drool again.  

Friday, December 3, 2010

What does a snail say when it's riding on a turtle's back?

The netbook wouldn't work at the hospital last night. It was quite frustrating. I wasn't going to post much, but I was going to post something. And who knows? Maybe it was just Blogger that wasn't working. I couldn't get it to work from my phone, either. It may have been a drug induced post, but it would have indeed been a post. Oh well. I gave myself permission to miss a post or two, right?

I'm home now, so Blogger is working. Yay Blogger!

I'm a bit souped up on Percocet right now. It works wonders for the pain, but I hate what it does to my head. I would not be a good drug addict at all. Good thing, considering I've been on so many different pain meds recently.

I have to say that I am so thrilled that Susan from Ami.Mental. tie dyed a night gown for me. Those hospital gowns are horrid and horribly cold, and I was able to put my night gown on and keep my shoulders and neck warm. It helped so much! I will forever be grateful! Oh. And the walks around the floor I was on were much more comfortable with the nightie versus one (or even even two) of those gowns. I loved that it went so far down my legs that I didn't have to worry about flashing anyone! It made for a much more comfortable stay, and I appreciate the love that went into making it. The other patients and the staff loved it, too.

I am at the point I'm having a rough time staying awake again. It's rather frustrating, but I'm so thrilled to be home. I think I'm going to go take a nap.

Oh. You're wondering about about the answer to the riddle?

Scroll down...


A little bit further now....


And a little bit further than that...


Come on. You can do it......


"Wheeeeeeeee!"

My life as a snail may be a bit slower paced than others, but I कैन, and दो, still have fun. :)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Guest Post: Surgery

Dear Everyone,

Mom asked me to let you all know when she was out of surgery...well everything went fine and she is doing well. She is in recovery right now and should be moved to a room within the next hour or so. Thank you all for your concern and support, and a special thanks to AmiMental for sending her the comfy tie-dye hospital shirt. She loves it. :)

And that's all for me. My daddy (AKA Hubster) may or may not post an update for you but, well, he's a guy, and doesn't care much for blogging. He's also gonna be taking care of mom so...probably not.

Your favorite closet hoarder sends her best. <3

Sincerely, Bugster

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Keep it simple, stupid.

So. This is it.

I am not sure, if I'll keep up with the blog every day, or if I'll take a day or two off when I need it in the next couple of weeks. I'm giving myself permission to miss a day here and there, if I need one, but I am hoping either The Hubster or Bugster will do a quick post tomorrow night, but I'm okay, if they don't.

I'm tired tonight. A bit on the chilled side, (not chilled in a sick way, but chilled in a my body's decided it's time for me to crawl under the covers for the night way), but that happens when I get tired. I've got to go shower with my special soap tonight before I can go to bed. I'd really rather just go to bed, but I'll be a good girl and shower.

I've got to pack a quick bag. I won't be taking much. My nightie. The netbook...just in case I'm feeling well enough to post. My phone. Other than that? Not much. It seems I always take way too much to the hospital and never get around to even 1/4 of what I take, so this time I'm not going to do it. If I need something from home, I'll ask my husband to bring it up with him.

If there's one thing I've learned since that cold day last January, when I learned I am a hoarder, it's that there's a lot of good to be found in the saying, "Keep it simple, stupid."

I'm learning.

I'm learning.

Hope to see y'all soon!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanks.

Tonight, I was going to post the second Progress in Pictures post, but I got something in the mail today that made me change my mind...

My friend, Susan, over at Ami.Mental., sent me a surprise to wear when I go to the hospital for my surgery Wednesday. It got here today, and I am so excited and anxious to wear my night shirt!
The picture doesn't do it justice! It's much prettier than the picture shows. The colors, especially the purple, are so vibrant! I absolutely LOVE it! Thank you so very much, Susan!! You did an absolutely AMAZING job! I am so in awe of your talent!!

She also sent some yummy smelling soap that I look forward to using as I'm recuperating. :)
Susan thought of everything. She even sent 3 pair of little booty slipper socks for me, Hopper and Scooter - mine, so I have something pretty and comfy at the hospital to wear, and so they have something to wear here at home when I'm not around. They're so soft and fuzzy. They're definitely going to keep our tooties warm. :)Thank you so much, Susan! I appreciate your generosity, but mostly I appreciate your friendship!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

It's all fun and games until someone loses an eye...

Today was a good day overall.

I like good days.

Hopper went in to see a doctor today. It apparently is just a viral bug that she has, but the stress has made it worse. The doctor said, if Hopper's fever goes higher than 100° (she was 99.8° today) to bring her back in. In the meantime, we're just supposed to keep her on the nebulizer treatments for a few days until she seems to be doing better. She said her ear looks okay, too, but it's red in there. I looked with our otoscope after she complained that her ear hurt. We'll obviously keep an eye on her, but unfortunately, she will likely have to go in again.

I got a few loads of laundry done. I don't know, if I'll ever fully catch up. It's the nature of the beast, and we all know the Laundry Beast is a big scary dude! Stupid hairy creature, anyway.

While I was in the laundry room, I got distracted. I realized that I still had an entire laundry basket full of recently laundered and folded fabric. So I decided that since I finally have a place to put it, I'd put it away.

One thing led to another, and I got distracted again.

Imagine that.

I decided to sort all the small boxes of craft stuff I had stored upstairs. It's been frustrating having all the small boxes sitting around. I never knew exactly where to find things, and the boxes were unsightly. Something needed to be done. Before I knew it, I'd sorted through several boxes of crafts and found places for everything. It was so exciting getting things put away after all these years.

While I was sorting the craft stuff, The Hubster brought in an antique buffet we bought this summer using the Found Money Fund. There were a couple very minor repairs needed, but overall it was in great shape. One of the repairs that needed done involved putting in a small piece of wood inside and attaching it to the back of the buffet to support the shelf area that holds dishes. It was missing, so the people who we bought the buffet from couldn't even use the buffet for it's intended purpose. I feel sort of bad for them not getting to fully enjoy it.

But I digress....

It was easier to replace this piece with the buffet turned upside down. So we took the drawers out, and set them on the floor. The Hubster was working on it, so I went back to sorting craft stuff. I remarked to my husband that I loved having the nice carpet we have downstairs, so I can go barefoot. (If I go barefoot upstairs, my legs get cold and then I ache all over, so to be able to free my feet from their shoes is so liberating!) I no sooner said this, than I needed to go help my husband with the buffet.

As I went to help hubby, I went a little too quickly and misjudged where the drawers for the buffet were sitting. I cracked the second to largest toe on my left foot as I passed by. Between the pain and the hot flash that ensued at the exact same time I hit my foot, I felt like either getting sick to my stomach or passing out. Thankfully, the feeling passed after a few minutes, but not before my toe started bleeding.

For awhile, I thought I'd broken the toe, but I didn't. The toe isn't really swollen, and it's straight with no bruising. I can even put some weight on it. However, I'm pretty sure I tore the toenail off. I can see where it bent back all the way down by the quick, and it's sore. My loving husband patched it up with a bright blue bandage for now. I'll try to trim part of the toenail tomorrow. If I can't, I may just ask the surgeon to take care of it when I go in. At least I wouldn't feel anything then, and I'm all for not feeling it.

I thought of putting a picture of my sad little toe on the blog, but Bugster talked me out of it. She didn't have to talk too fast. It was only a fleeting thought.

Still. You should thank her.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

The back of my eyelids are so pretty about now.

I didn't get around to taking pictures today for my next posts. We were busy with other things and little people.

Hopper is sick. Hacking and coughing up lungs kind of sick. She is miserable. The coughing subsided a better with a nebulizer treatment than with medicines, so her asthma is definitely acting up. We will likely take her in tomorrow, if she's not better. I looked in her ears, and it appears as though she's getting an ear infection on top of everything else.

She's the only one who is really all that sick. I have slight sniffles, but nothing major. And I'm still hoping the zinc supplements kick it into overdrive and help me get over this as quickly as possible. My fear is that they won't let me have surgery on Wednesday like planned. I would really like to get the surgery and the cold out of the way.

Today we were able to get the fans blown out with the air hose and put in the attic. Got our other 2 space heaters down and the dust blown off. Normally I keep them in their original boxes, but the heaters were just sitting up there. My only thought is that I either couldn't find the boxes because they were in the attic when they were put away last, or someone put them up there to get them out of the way and didn't realize they had boxes to go with them. Doesn't matter. They're down now and look like they've been scrubbed, because the air hose was so effective. I love those things. They're the ones that look like little radiators and have oil in them. They work so well at helping keep the house warm. We'll have on downstairs and the other 2 will be upstairs, in case we need them

We worked on a window in the basement today. Last year we had some lumber that wouldn't fit through the door and around the corner to go to the basement. So it wen through the window downstairs. The window had to be taken off it's track, and when it was taken apart the little piece of rubber spline between the window and the screen was thrown away. The windows are original to the house, so we couldn't go down and buy more spline to replace it. So today, we figured out a way to put some weather stripping in place of the spline, and it worked. The basement is so much warmer already.

We were also able to get a new sliding shower bar put up in the upstairs bathroom as well as a shower caddy thing. It's one of those poles that goes in the corner of the shower that has the baskets and shelves to hold shampoos and soaps. We've been meaning to get to both of these things for several months. They're finally done. In the other bathroom, we finally got a soap dispenser hung on the wall. It has 4 compartments to use for shampoo, conditioner, soap, whatever you need or want, really. We've had it forever with the intention of getting it hung up to use, too, but at least we can say it's up now. It should save us a small fortune in shampoo. Hopper loves to attempt to wash her own hair, and she uses a lot of shampoo. This should keep it in better check.

Hubster also got the banister put back up. We took it down when the basement flooded, because we had so much that needed brought up or taken downstairs. The banister was just in the way. However, with Mom coming to help out when I have surgery, it was time to get it back up. Actually, it was probably past time to get it back up, but it's up now, and that's all that really matters.

When we were finished with the things we were able to get done on the list, my back was hurting. And with the surgery coming up, I'm not allowed to take ibuprofen or other things that can thin my blood. So I went to get the prescription pain killer I have to get me through until I can take NSAIDS again, and I couldn't find it. I looked high and low, but it was nowhere to be found. We looked under couches and couch cushions, night stands and even the trash. It was so exasperating. We looked for a couple of hours before my husband found it just inches from where it was supposed to be. We think Hopper moved it to take care of something else and just missed it when putting things back. I am so glad it showed up.

It's been a long but productive day. I'm glad it's come to an end, though. I'm ready to get some sleep in my bed instead of the head bobbing kind that I get when I fall asleep writing my blog.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Progress in pictures. Part 1.

K helped me a lot over the last 10 days or so. Over the next few days, I will be posting pictures of some of the projects we worked on. The first project was part of my craft area. The Hubster and I got a couple of really pretty oak cupboards on Craigslist for an unbelievably low price of $100 each about a year ago. I knew the moment I saw them that I wanted them for the craft area.

They were solid oak and had been used in some sort of a medical situation. The shelves and drawers all had labels inside. I peeled off labels that said anything from 'adult diapers', to 'chux pads' and 'catheters', knowing I would replace those labels with labels of my own. I'm really looking forward to healing enough from the surgery that I can start sorting my craft supplies and putting them in their places. It will be fun to get it all put away and labeled according to how I want it labeled.

After all the caulking and painting in the family and workout rooms were finished, The Hubster helped me move the craft cupboards in the place we had in mind for them the moment I saw their picture online. We had bought some solid oak shelves that were darker in color than the cabinets to put between them but we weren't sure how we were going to mount them. We had a few options.

We could try to install those metal shelf bracket things on the wall between the cabinets and make them adjustable. The problem with that, though, was that the only stud between the cabinets fell in the center. We were concerned that the weight of the shelves and contents would be enough it would pull the thing out of the drywall, if we used drywall anchors. So that option was off the table.

We figured we could use metal brackets. We'd screw the brackets into the shelving and into the sides of the cupboards, but that gets expensive. We'd need 16 screws and 4 brackets for each shelf. And while we could weather the expense the problem really comes with having 4 screw holes in each cupboard for each shelf we put up.

I decided on the last option. I took a 1x2 and cut it into 10" pieces and screwed them on the sides of the cupboards. Using my grandfather's level, we made sure the shelves were straight and then put the other furring strip on the other cupboard. It all went smoothly with K's help, but the color of the 1x2s really stuck out. It wouldn't work at all. So I took the Old English to them, and they looked like they were part of an overall unit. It was perfect!
As you can tell in this picture, the boards looked like they were meant to be a part of a bigger piece of furniture. And of course, I had to have my grandfather's level in the photo. He would have been so proud of me for not being too intimidated to do the work I've done just, because I'm a girl. That makes me really happy. Just like using his level.

This is how they looked when we were all done...
I am so ready to start using them! I'm so very happy with how they turned out, and I look forward to many years and many hours of crafting with my girls down there.

And as hard as it was at the time that the pipe burst and flooded our basement, it's one of the best things that has ever happened to us.

I am thankful for that blessing in disguise.

Very. Very. Thankful.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Gobble Gobble.

Bugster, Bubster and Frank came over for dinner today for Thanksgiving. It was wonderful getting to see them. It's funny and sad how time seems to speed by when we get the opportunity to have them over. We wouldn't miss it for the world, though.

We split the menu, so neither of us was totally overwhelmed with preparing the food. It seemed to work out well, and the food was delicious. I think we'll probably do this for holiday meals from now on. Holidays can just be so stressful, and I think anything that can bring down the stress level is good. It just makes things more enjoyable for everyone, and today was definitely enjoyable.

K and I were able to get a lot accomplished this last week. I will be writing about it and posting pictures in the next few days. Hopefully, I'll be able to do it when I'm more awake than I am now. Maybe tomorrow.

Right now, I'm going to bed thankful for more things than I can even count.

I am incredibly blessed.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Yeah. That's the ticket.

When I woke up this morning, I called my doctor's office to see, if they knew of a different surgeon for me to see, or if there was any way she could do the appendectomy. I got a call back from my doctor's nurse. She said my doctor wouldn't be back in until Monday, and she wasn't sure what other surgeon to refer me to, so I just told her what happened and that I wouldn't be having the appendectomy. She asked, if I had talked to the surgeon's office yet, and I told her that I was planning on calling them as soon as I hung up and thanked her for her help and got off the phone.

When I called the surgeon's office, I told the woman who answered the phone that I needed to cancel the appendectomy. She asked me why, so I told her what the doctor did, and that I wasn't
comfortable having him do the surgery, where he filled the consent form out for me and didn't give me the choice about having the student in the room. Then, I asked her to please cancel the post-op appointment for me, since I'm obviously not going to be coming in for it, since I'm not having the appendectomy.

What she did next blew me away. I almost laughed, because she sounded so haughty, but I just shook my head. In a very irritated and gruff voice, she said, "Well. I'm going to have to tell Dr. Soandso about this!" It was like she was tattling to the principal or something. Like she wanted to get me in trouble. I told her not to worry about it. That I'd already called my doctor's office and told them. She didn't have much to say after that. I think I deflated her balloon of indignation.

But the thing that blows me away is this: If I felt the surgeon was being too pushy and trying to be intimidating, did she really think that talking to me like that was going to make me change my mind and say, "Oh! You know, I made a mistake! I really do want the jerk to do my surgery after all!"

Yeah. That's the ticket.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

What would you do?

I need to write this before the pain meds kick in, and I'm in LaLa Land.

Had the pre-surgical appointment at the hospital today. Everything went fine, but I almost didn't make it to the appointment. I use the alarms on my cell phone every day. Several alarms every day, even. But something happened to my phone last night, and the battery didn't charge. And the battery had died. Thankfully, I happened to wake up 15 minutes before I had to leave the house, and I was able to make it across town and get to my appointment with 2 minutes to spare.

My second appointment happened a few hours later at the general surgeon's office. I was hoping to get a scar fixed on my arm while I'm already in surgery, but he said he didn't feel the surgery would do anything to help with the pain I have in it, and that he felt it bordered on 'unnecessary surgery'. He made me feel like he thought I was trying to scam the insurance company.

Then, we talked about the appendectomy I had asked about. I figured that since I'm already going to be out for surgery the way it was, that maybe it would be a good time to get my appendix out. It makes a lot of sense as far as being cost effective. It would be cheaper for the insurance company and cheaper for us, if I had it done at the same time. And while he said he would do it, he also wrote down on the consent form that the reason for the appendectomy was that the 'patient requested it'.

He didn't say that the patient requested it, because she's having other surgery that day. Just that the patient requested it. I don't know, if I was just oversensitive or what, but it came across to me like he thought I was just asking for the sake of wasting money, and it made me uneasy.

Then, he gave me the consent form to sign. At the bottom of the consent form there are 4 things you have to give or deny consent for or mark as not applicable...1) Do you consent to a student being present and helping perform the surgery? 2) Do you consent to a graft, if a graft is needed. 3) Do you agree to have a blood transfusion, if necessary? and 4) Do you consent to have anesthesia in spite of the risks.

I filled out the same consent form at my gynecologist's office yesterday. When it came time to answer the 4 questions, she checked off that the graft was not applicable and told me she'd give me a minute to read through things and check the boxes I felt comfortable with. But she gave me the choice. And the only one I even had to think twice about was having a student present during surgery.

However, the surgeon today had checked the boxes that he wanted checked. Not the ones wanted. Granted, 2 of the 3 questions were answered the way I would have answered them, but he just assumed I was okay with having a student in the OR. I wasn't. And I explained that I wasn't okay with it, and that I had specifically checked the box that said I did not want to have a student in the room while I had surgery at the other doctor's office.

He got a little irritated with me. He proceeded to try to guilt me into accepting a student in the room. He said, "You mean you don't even want Jamie, the girl that was just in here helping you and taking your history in there with me? She'd be observing me." But the thing is, if I agreed to have her in the room, that I was agreeing to her helping with the surgery itself. I again said that I wasn't comfortable with it. So he scribbled out the check mark on the 'agree' line and checked the 'do not agree' line.

I felt very uncomfortable with it all. I felt like he was trying to pressure me, to guilt me, into doing what HE wanted. Not what I wanted or was comfortable with. And the only time he asked me about it was after I said I wasn't comfortable with it, and then I felt pressured to go along with what he wanted.

Tonight when I sat down to the computer, I looked him up online. He only has a rating of 1.5 out of 5 stars for satisfaction with patients. Granted, there were only 5 ratings, but that also means that not even one person gave him a 5 overall. I mean, those are some really low ratings. If not even 1 out of 5 patients can give you a 5, you're not the surgeon for me.

I'll be calling my gynecologist (whose rating is 4.5 out of 5 based on 4 reviews, and whose ratings I totally agree with) to let her know that I will not be going with him as a surgeon. I will skip having an appendectomy rather than put my life in his hands.

I doubt I'll have time to get into another surgeon between now and next Wednesday, so I will probably only have one surgery and one surgeon in the room. I'm much more comfortable with that than having him touch me.

I will definitely let someone in his office know why I've chosen not to utilize his services. I think I'm also going to let someone at the hospital know that I felt he was trying to coerce me into having the student in the operating room.

I'm not sure who I need to tell, but I'm know I need to tell somebody.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Eww gwoss!

So. I've been asked a couple of times, if I really did fall asleep when I wrote this post the other day, or if I was just pretending to fall asleep for the post. The answer is that I did indeed fall asleep. Several times while writing that post, in fact, as one can tell by the repeated letters.

I really do try to be as honest on this blog. I need to be as real as possible with myself, or I'll likely fall back into old habits and start hoarding again. So even when I write about things that really don't have anything to do with the overall hoarding picture, when I'm being goofy, there's truth in what I'm saying. I owe it to myself.

Now that that has been cleared up...

I had to go in for my pre-op visit today with my doctor. I have 2 more appointments tomorrow. When I get home, K will come over again to help me get things finished up. We got a lot done downstairs today - got the shelves put up between the craft cabinets, got several boxes unpacked, sorted and put away, replaced an electrical outlet, and leveled the craft tables as best we could. They're not very level, but between the concrete floor being lumpy in places and the fact they're sitting on carpet on top of said floor, we weren't expecting much. I'm not exactly sure how I'll get them level in the long run, but thankfully it's not something we need to figure out for awhile.

We haven't done any trim around the windows to make them look finished yet. I was hoping to get to it before I get laid up, but I don't think that's going to happen. However, we need to at least try to get them a little more weather proofed. They're cheap little single pane aluminum windows that have no insulating factor at all. So I decided to vacuum them out. Right before I got the vacuum up there, I noticed a spider in the corner of the window.

It's body shape was like that of a black widow, but the color was all wrong. It was more of a creamy yellow, but the thing that surprised me was the marking on its back. It looked like a little flower made of dots. I'm not sure, if it's a poisonous spider or not, but I wasn't taking the chance. I vacuumed it up. I don't like spiders in my house. I like trying to relocate them outside even less.

I did take a picture of its back, though. Does anyone else notice a flower pattern, or is it just me?
Better yet, anyone have any idea what kind it is? It looks like it ate well judging by the insect carcasses piled up under it.

:::shudder:::

I probably should not have posted about a spider right before bed. Hope I don't dream about them.

:::double shudder:::

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Monkey? What monkey?

Today, we worked on getting one of the shelves that K painted the other day in the cubby area under the stairs. Let's just say we had to get creative. Even though we measured accurately, the board didn't fit. Turns out the cubby area is not square. Not a right angle in sight, so we are dealing with a parallelogram rather than a rectangle.

Once we finally got the board in place, it fit just fine on the left side, but it stuck out almost an inch in front on the right side, and there was a gap of an inch or so in the back on the right. Since we're planning on putting something a little smoother on top of the plywood, so it won't snag the fabric I store there, we just cut the edge of the front off and stuck it in the gap in the back. However, we've now got to deal with the angles for the cover piece and for the other shelves we'll be putting in.

I'm not exactly sure what we'll be doing to get the angles right. I need to be able to think straight to figure out what to do, and I'm tired enough that thinking isn't a strong point right now. I know there's a construction tool, a compass of some sort, that you can open up into the corner of a box to measure the angle. Something like that could be handy to have around for other uses, so if it's not too expensive, we may spring for one. If not, I'll have to resort to geometry. And geometry means I need to think, so I guess that means I also need to get sleep. Ha.

I was able to finish all the touch up paint for the dark green paint and all but the side of one doorway for the light green, so I'll be able to finish the last of the touch up painting tomorrow. I'll still have to do some painting inside the cubbies when we figure out what we're going to do in there, but at least I'll be able to put the other paint cans away. I'm glad I'm almost done with it.

Mom's dog that we've been sitting has loved hanging out with us downstairs while we work. He often grabs one of his toys and brings it to us to toss, so he can run after it. However, Scooter has fallen in love with two of his toys, and she tries to keep them for herself instead of letting him play with them. She lets us know she loves them by petting them and hugging them. It's been funny to watch her.

Today, she put his little monkey toy in her back 'pocket'.
You only thought skirts didn't have back pockets.

That's whatcha get for thinking!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Of logs and meadows, crown moulding and stripes. Oh. And pictures to boot.

I'm tired tonight, but I'll sleep like a log. A very restful log with moss growing on it in the shade of a warm and sunny meadow.

I worked for twelve hours in the basement today. My elbow has rug burn on it from having to paint the caulking that bled into the paint above the baseboards. We tried using clear caulking, but it didn't look like we'd used it at all once it dried, and where we could see it, it turned yellow. So we had to go with white instead. The only problem was that it bled into the green.

Bugster and Frank came over last night and volunteered to help out. They helped with some of the touch up painting that needed done, and I'm so very grateful for the extra hands! Bugster painted the bottoms of the dark stripes where they meet the baseboards, and Frank painted the tops of the crown moulding where it met the ceiling, because the caulking dulled the finish of the paint. It was really obvious when the light shone on it just right, and it would have driven me nuts, so it was nice having it done.

You can see in the picture how crisp and clean the top of the wide stripe to the left looks compared to the other two stripes. That's the difference it made to cover up the caulking that bled into the paint. And as time consuming as it was, it was so worth doing. It makes the entire room look so much better.

So while Bugster worked on the bottom of the stripes last night, I worked on finishing up the light green stripes today, doing both the top and bottom of those that weren't finished yesterday. I also did the entire workout room today. It took several hours, but I'm so glad it's done.

The workout room is as done as it's going to be until next Spring, when we can get the oak door with the windows in it stained and hung. If we have time before my surgery, we'll put the trim around the windows, but I'm okay, if we don't get to it. The rest of the workout room is done, and it's nice to have it out of the way.

The corner boxes were a bit harder to deal with. And although this picture isn't the best, you can get an idea of how they look before and after, with the left side being the before and the right being the after. I'll post more pictures later on. I just wanted to get these up to show what we did today.
One other thing we did today was finish covering the television cable, so it blended in better than just having a black cable line hanging down the wall. Most of it will be covered by the bookshelf/entertainment center, but I still wanted it to look nice. We may not always use that bookshelf as an entertainment center. We used some white plastic cable covers that we'd gotten a year ago. The cable originates upstairs on the far wall, goes through the floor upstairs, through the ceiling downstairs, and is hidden under the crown moulding until it comes out at the opposite end of the family room. I love the fact that it's not on the floor with us having to trip over it or try to hide it behind furniture. And while it's a bit of an optical illusion and looks like we have a raised board in the edge of that section of wall, we're pleased with how it looks.

I'm hoping we'll finish up the family room and hallway completely tomorrow. I'd love to get the cubbies hung up above the refrigerator and stove tomorrow, but it will be fine, if it doesn't happen. Once we're done downstairs, I'll be able to concentrate on getting the kitchen and living room cleaned up again. It has been sadly neglected while I've worked downstairs, but it will be done in time for us to enjoy Thanksgiving together around the table.

Tonight?

I have a date with a warm meadow and a little bit of shade.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Tired much?

Yep. That's me. I've been in a state of walking exhaustion all week, but it's so been worth it.

I'll post pictures tomorrow night, if we get the basement finished tomorrow, but once again, I'm already falling asleep while typing. kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk

I was going to write about what we got done downstairs, butokkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk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I'll start writing early enough tomorrow, that I won't have to wake up to keyboard drooleeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.

Tomorrow then.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Asleep at the keyboard again.

I ache tonight, but it's worth every single twinge of pain I feel!

Well. Maybe it's not completely worth losing the table saw today but pretty darn close.

Yep. I caused the motor on the table saw to seize up. It's dead. I was cutting a piece of wood, and it got caught, and I took too long to pull the wood out or shut the saw off, and it just stopped. Seized up. And a small waft of black smoke drifted across the porch. I tried to turn it on several times after that, but there was nothing but the click of the switch. I doubt I'll be able to get the motor fixed or replaced cheaply enough to justify it. I mean, if it costs almost as much to replace/fix the motor as it would to buy a new one with a warranty or more than a used one, then it really doesn't make sense. Thankfully, we didn't pay anything for the saw, and we got several year of use out of it before it went belly up. We'll put it with the metal recycling we have, if it's beyond repair.

But the good news of the day?

Hopper had an incredibly good day at school. It's the first time this week she's not been stressed out at school. We gave her a second Theanine this morning before school. It helped her have a normal day. The poor little thing. I can't imagine walking around in a state of anxiety all day long, day after day with my heart racing, my palms sweating and not being able to think of anything but what was making me nervous. It has to be completely awful. We'll be giving her a second Theanine daily until I get home from the hospital and am feeling substantially better. I hate to see her suffer over things like this that just can't be helped.

The other good news? Yeah. K came over again today. We worked 8 hours straight and got lots done. The shelves for the cubbies under the stairs and the cubbies for over the stove and refrigerator have all been primed to paint tomorrow. I did some sanding on the doorways down stairs, and got the first of 2 coats of paint on them to finish them up. And K got the workout room almost completely caulked. We were busy.

And tonight I'm tired. I keep falling asleep as I'm writing. I suppose that means I need to just hit "publish" and go to bed.

We have another long day planned for tomorrow.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Untitled. Because I don't want to stretch my brain to think of a title tonight.

I'm so tired tonight. I should already be asleep, even though it's only 9:30.

I hurt all over. My fibro is in overdrive, but at least I've been working through the pain. I'll be working through it tonight again when I take a pain pill before I crawl under the covers. I think we're going to have to turn the heat up from 69 to 70. It's been okay for awhile, but the cold really makes me hurt more. I'm already looking forward to next summer.

K came over again today. We got an amazing amount of work done. We still have so much to do that it's overwhelming when I look at it like that. I just have to concentrate on what we've accomplished. We were able t to finish all the caulking on the hallway. It took the most time, because there were 3 smaller doorways and a rather large doorway to caulk around. Inside and outside of the frames. It looks fantastic!

We were also able to get over half the crown moulding caulked. Caulking around the includes caulking it at the top and the bottom where it meets the ceiling and wall. We were able to finish caulking at least 2/3 of the moulding in the family room. We'll have to finish the last 1/3 and then get the crown moulding in the workout room finished. The baseboards will need done, too, but they'll be the easiest to finish up. I'm just so excited at how finished everything looks. I'm anxious to get it all done.

It's supposed to be a bit warmer tomorrow, so we're going to try to finish cutting the shelving for the cubbies under the stairs, sanding them and getting the first coat or two of paint on them. I'm hoping we'll have time to finish up the caulking tomorrow, too. Then all we'll have very little left to do to finish up the basement.

I don't know, if we'll get to the point of finishing the window trim, and I highly doubt I'll have time to stain the oak door with the windows in it that will be installed between the family room and the workout room, but you never know. We actually won't be able to finish putting up the baseboards on either side of the wall that separates the two rooms until the door is installed. We may just have to wait awhile to get that done, and I'm okay with that.

Hopper had another rough day at school today. After talking with the nurse, we realized it's because she's nervous about me going into surgery in a couple of weeks. Poor thing. I wish there was more we could do to help her out. I'm so glad Mom will be here to help her be strong when I'm in the hospital.

I'm fighting a very slight sore throat tonight. And here I sit wide awake when I couldn't seem to keep my eyes open at 4:30 this afternoon. I honestly think I could have slept for a full 12 hours, if I'd given into the urge to sleep earlier and skipped writing tonight. But my blog is a priority. I need to write here daily to keep my focus on the big picture: that I am a hoarder and that I'm working to change that.

Besides. I'll get plenty of rest after my surgery.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Progress of the tangible kind.

So. K came over again today, and we got enough done that I'm thrilled.

We got the cubbies that will go above the stove and refrigerator built again. I'm thrilled. Because the MDF was thinner than the shelving we'd used initially, I was able add an extra cubby, so we can use all 6 baskets instead of only 5. That will be nice. The fit is a little tight, but I am okay with that. The baskets will slide freely out of each area, and I really do need the 6th spot, so I'm quite happy with it all.

We were also able to get some shelves cut to put in the bottom half of the coat closet. The coat closet's floor is angled, because it sits above the stairs. It's a pain. There's a major lack of storage, and we need some shelves to be able to store the girls shoes and the box of gloves, hats and scarves. During the summer months, they're stored on the top shelf, but I need it more accessible now. It's nice for Hopper and Scooter to be able to get their own things out and know where to put them away when they get home from school. Plus, there's no way my back can handle getting it down every day when they need gloves or a scarf for school.

We'll be installing the shelves tomorrow as well as finishing up the caulking downstairs. Once the caulking is done, the only thing we'll have left to do in the basement is touch up painting where we patched holes. Well, it's all we'll be doing before I go in for surgery. We have crown moulding left over that we're thinking of installing in the hallway as well as new baseboards for Hopper's room. Thankfully, all of that can wait until we have a bit more time. The rest is what's so important to get done as soon as possible.

We'll be painting the cubbies and shelves on Thursday or Friday when it's a bit warmer outside and installing them this weekend. I am so excited that I'll have the storage back in the kitchen that I gave up a year ago. I'm seriously over having boxes of stuff sitting around.

And just in time for Thanksgiving.

Yay!!

Monday, November 15, 2010

The end is near.

Today has been a long but productive day.

I spoke with the school to reschedule Hopper's IEP staffing. We had to cancel the first two appointments, because the kids were sick. Exploding gastrointestinal issues aren't conducive to getting out of the house for a meeting. We got the letter on Saturday saying that the final date we could have the staffing was the day I was going in for surgery. But of course. I explained how critical it is for us to have this particular staffing, because Hopper ages out of the program either in May or December of next year, and the date hinges on what happens at this meeting. I got a call at the end of the day. They made a special appointment for us 10 days after I have surgery. Hopefully, I'll be feeling well enough to go by then, but at least The Hubster will have the time off to attend, if I can't. It's quite the relief.

I also got a call from the school saying Hopper wasn't feeling well and had a headache and claimed her ears hurt. I went down to the school to pick her up, and she started crying. She didn't want to come home. She asked to take ibuprofen. I asked, if it was okay, if we tried the ibuprofen out to see, if it worked. They were okay with it, so I went home. I called back 45 minutes later, and she was apparently doing fine.

However, an hour after that the school called again. She apparently had taken a turn for the worse, and she totally freaked the teacher and aides out. When I got there to pick her up, they had her sitting in a wheelchair, and she was all slumped over. They kept talking about how they'd never seen her like that before, and they were quite concerned. They said she complained about her back hurting and that her leg or knee were also hurting her.

I absolutely believe they were very concerned about her. However, I also think she had their number. When she got out of the car, she didn't limp, and she ran downstairs when we got home to see a young woman who had come over to help me out. There appeared to be no pain at all. However, she has been asleep since shortly after she got home, so she definitely isn't feeling well. She just isn't on death's door or in need of a wheelchair. I think she's constipated and doesn't know how to say what that feels like, so it's manifested itself as a headache, ear ache, back ache and sore knee all in the course of a few hours today. We'll keep her home tomorrow and see how she does. She'll go back to school Wednesday, if she's feeling better.

We'll leave the wheelchair out of the entire equation.

The young woman, K, who was helping me out today is a year younger than Hopper. We've known her and her family for most of her life, and I just can't say enough wonderful things about all of them. I needed some help with getting as much done downstairs as possible, so I can relax knowing it's all done before I have surgery. It's the stuff that's kills my back to do on my own. Hubster and I talked about it, and we figured it was worth paying someone to help me get as much done as possible, so we can get rid of the pod and the payment we're making on it each month.

I am beyond excited! K and I worked downstairs today, and we got so much accomplished. The trim work (crown moulding, baseboards and trim) that we've only worked on sporadically for the last year has finally met it's match. K filled the last of the nail holes with putty and she filled gaps between the crown moulding and corner boxes. I worked on filling gaps, too, but I only did one of the corner boxes. The rest of the time, I was caulking the door trim.

The original door trim that we replaced must have been slightly different in thickness. It was wooden. What we replaced it with was the MDF stuff. It could also be that we just weren't sure of what we were doing, but let me just say there were gaps. I used a paintable caulking, so we can go over it all with paint, so it doesn't show, when we're all done. But I am absolutely thrilled and amazed!

The caulking makes everything looked finished. It makes it look like The Hubster and I knew what we were doing when we installed the trim. And it makes it look like the gaps weren't our fault. They've disappeared! Finally, after all this time, I feel like we're going to be able to finish the basement before I go in for surgery. I am so excited!

Tomorrow, K and I will be working on some shelving, since we have to use the saws outside, and it's supposed to be warmer. Once we get done with them, we'll go back downstairs and work on the trim. Then hopefully, we'll be able to work on painting the shelves later in the week when it's warmer. I'm just so excited that we're making such good progress.

The end is in sight!!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Being square really is all it's cracked up to be.

Well. We tried.

We did get a lot accomplished on our list of things we needed to get done, but we were less than successful with putting the cubbies up above the stove and refrigerator. The wood apparently was warped - probably before we even assembled it. So it didn't fit. It was all out of square. If it fit okay on one end, it was a half inch away from the wall and the soffit on the other, which was 6 feet away.

So The Hubster went to the hardware store before they closed and got some MDF cut, so we can start on it again. I'm at least going to get it put together this week. I'm hoping I can get it painted before I have surgery, but the biggest thing is getting it up, so I have a place to put the things that came out of the cabinet. It will make it so much easier to keep things clean, if I have that area for storage. I can paint it anytime.

In the meantime, we'll figure out where we're going to put the other cubbies we couldn't use. We'll probably put them in one of the girls' rooms. We may just hang them on the wall, but the fact that we won't have to hang them under a soffit will make them much easier to put up. Who knows? They might work well in the closet to put baskets in that hold toys or socks. Needless to say, they won't be wasted.

We did get the rolling bookshelf together and got it downstairs. It should work just fine for what we need it for. I realized after we got it down there that we had wanted it about 2" narrower, but it will work fine. There is no way we're going to start over on it. We just won't see the door trim on that side of the wall. We can live with that. Besides. If we were to shave off the extra 2", there's be less room for The Hubster's obsession. And considering the thing is 6 feet tall, that's quite a few books. We'll just leave it as is for now.

My poor husband has to be exhausted tonight. He did a lot of lifting for me today. One of the tables I'd painted that we had downstairs was mismatched. The holes didn't line up to attach the base to the top. So he took the base from downstairs out to the back porch and brought the one that was with the table top out there downstairs. I appreciate it so much! Now I'll have 2 usable craft tables to sort things on when they come in from out in the pod that's on the driveway, to wrap Christmas gifts, and to use for crafts or sewing projects. I'm so looking forward to it.

The Hubster also brought the old water heater upstairs from the laundry room by himself, as well as a couple of smaller things that I couldn't bring up on my own. It will be so nice to have that extra space in the laundry room. It will give more airflow to the furnace, too, so that's another plus.

I also got the dehumidifier we use in the laundry room taken apart and cleaned out well with the air hose and a steel brush. The dust build up in it was unbelievable! And although the thing turns on and the fan works and all, it's not taking any moisture out of the air. I think the coolant needs charged. If I can find where to charge it, I will, but I'm not going to worry about it for a few months. It's so dry here in the winter that a little extra humidity won't hurt a thing. It can wait.

Overall, I'm satisfied with what we got done. I am admittedly frustrated that the cubbies didn't work, but I'm hopeful that I'll get the other ones built this week and put up before I have surgery. One of our friends' daughters will be coming to help me out in the next several days, so I can get things done before my surgery.

I have big plans.

Hopefully, they're not too grandiose.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Hope springs eternal.

Today has been long and not as productive as I'd like.

Some days are just like that.

Hopper is stressed over my upcoming surgery. She stresses easily, and it comes out in all sorts of rough ways. Like stressing over her dad going on his run today. We really have no idea what sets her off. Sometimes it happens. Other times, she's fine with him going for his run. Today, she started having a meltdown a good 15 minutes before he left. The meltdown didn't stop for 30 minutes after he was gone.

She was upset he was gone, but she started fixating on something, and for the life of me, I couldn't figure out what she was saying. While she's verbal, she's not always intelligible, and she was definitely struggling. She also often says, 'no' when she means, 'yes', and vice versa and very often, she doesn't hear what we're saying correctly, so it can be quite the puzzle trying to figure out what she's saying. And while sometimes it can be a bit humorous, it can also be quite traumatic.

For 30 minutes, she cried and tried so hard to tell me and show me what she was asking. She kept trying to act out what she was asking. She would draw her one arm up, so her fist was by her shoulder, and the other arm was outstretched. It looked like she was trying to shoot a bow and arrow.

But she's never even seen one.

I asked her, if it had to do with Daddy's run. No. It didn't. But it resulted in more crying and exasperation.

Was it on a street driving away from here? No. And cue crying.

Was it at the store? Nope. Not there either.

Was she talking about exercises? No. That wasn't it, and the drama continued.

At one point, I joined her in the crying. It's so frustrating to not be able to help her, and it's so hard to see her go through the pain of not being understood.

I asked her repeatedly to show me where it was, if it was in the house. She said it wasn't.

Finally, I just asked her to follow me, and I pointed out some workout things my husband uses to strengthen his forearms. If he doesn't use them, he has a problem with tendonitis. So I took her to them and asked, if that was what she was talking about.

It was.

Finally.

She was trying to find out, if he was going to do his exercises when he got home. He wasn't. But she has such a hard time living in the moment, because she's always looking ahead to what's going to happen or not going to happen next that she just can't relax. Today was a prime example.

After I finally figured out what it was and discerned her unintelligible jargoning, she was fine, but my neck and shoulders are still tight all these hours later. I'm just so glad she was able to go to bed with a smile on her face, and it all but forgotten.

Somehow, I was able to get 6 or 7 loads of laundry done today, even though we didn't get started on the list just yet. We'll be kicking into overdrive to work on it tomorrow. I think we'll be able to get most of it done.

I hope.

I need a bigger win.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Blue Moon

It's been overcast the last several days. Between that and the fact that there is much less sunlight during the day now, I realized it's affecting my mood and is getting worse as time goes on. I've struggled to even blog the last several weeks.

A year ago, when I ended up so sick with the swine flu, I went off some of my medicines to give my liver a break. My liver and spleen were both enlarged from the flu, and I figured they'd get better faster, if I stopped taking some of the medicines I was on. One that I stopped taking was my antidepressant. I went back on it in January, but when I did, I only went back on it at half strength. I'm thinking I may need to go back to my old dose through the winter months. I don't think I can take much more of the lack of motivation and feeling down. I know what I'm like at my best, and this is far from it.

I forced myself to be as productive as possible today. I was able to get the shelf liner in the drawers on the white cupboard I painted earlier. I then sorted through the things I'd taken out of the linen closet and put in the laundry basket several weeks ago. I was able to throw several things, give away others, and put the rest where it was was supposed take up permanent residence. It all fit in one drawer of the cupboard. It's a relief to have it finished.

I also did several loads of laundry today, but I have so many more to do. I'd like to be caught up on it before I go in for surgery, but I'm not going to sweat it, if it doesn't happen. I'm almost caught up on the laundry that we currently use. It's the stuff that's been sitting in the hallway since I took it out of Hopper's room that I haven't gotten around to just yet.

I made a list of things I'd like for us to accomplish this weekend. We'll see how it goes.

I'll count today as a win.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

A recent conversation...

The Hubster and I were working downstairs a few weekends ago. Our hands were full, and we needed Hopper's help. We just needed her to grab the tube of wood putty on the table out on the porch. It looked like a tube of toothpaste. . .

Me: Hopper, can you go get the thing on the table on the porch that looks like a tube of toothpaste? We need it for something down here. It looks like a tube of toothpaste.

Hopper: Blood?

Me: No. Not blood. It looks like a tube of toothpaste. It has an orange lid. On the table on the porch. It looks like a tube of toothpaste.

Hopper: Blood?

Me: No. We need the thing that looks like a tube of toothpaste. Has an orange lid.

Hopper: Blood?

Me. No. Not blood.

Hopper: BUGS?

Me: Nope. Not bugs. It still looks like a tube of toothpaste.

Life in the Closet is never dull. Confusing sometimes, but never dull. :)