Monday, November 30, 2009

Stop Kat Now

So, Utah was great. Saw the fam. Ate turkey (well, I actually didn't, but everyone else did). Felt sadness that I no longer live in Utah. You know, the usual.

The real news is that I finally spoke with Kat. She of "I-used-to-have-your-cell-phone-number-but-now-I-don't-yet-I-continue-to-distribute-the-number" fame. Apparently she used to have my cell phone number. When she first got our number, she left a message with her old number saying she changed numbers (to my number). When I talked (talked!) to her, she said that she has since erased that message, but sometimes the phone screws up and it gives the message out erroneously. Hence my only getting calls sporadically.

This still doesn't explain why so many people call her. I mean, who gets 23 phone calls a day? Anyone? Not me. I still think she's dealing drugs or dabbling in prostitution. But in true Utah fashion, she was still super nice and had really cute Girbaud jeans too! J/K! (j/k about j/k.)

Chuck thinks I should call the police. But really, what to say? "Uh, there's this girl who gives out my number and she gets lots of phone calls. Do something."

I think it's finally time to change the number.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Apparently I Forgot about Option 5

When I got home the other day, I found out that Chuck had chosen option 5 in order to deal with our illegally-parked neighbors. What's option 5, you ask? Right, I didn't give you an option 5. Turns out that option 5 is to leave a note on the Spanish. Why Spanish, you ask? They'd never guess that the white guy across the street speaks Spanish. So we'll never be the target of mean glances or, say, eggs thrown at windows. Let's hope this works. Apparently neither one of us has the chutzpah to really do anything else.

And even though he didn't, I want you to imagine that Chuck dressed in all black, tip-toeing out the front door around 1 a.m. to deliver the note on the windshield. Maybe he's even wearing a black raccoon mask. Isn't that a great picture?! I don't know whether to be secretly pleased and proud of my dear husband, or secretly embarrassed that he's part wimp.

P.S. Daniel, we tried a modified-Mumma park but we were too chicken to do it fully. Hopefully we won't need to.

P.P.S. Amanda, you better believe that as soon as the foreclosure is complete, and if they continue to park like that, I'll let the bank know. But as far as I can tell, tax records indicate that ownership is still in a person's name. However, the paper taped to the door suggests that it'll soon be changing hands.

P.P.P.S. Everyone, a new puzzle: same owner, different car. They have a truck with a flat tire and flat tire has been flat for months. Do I let that one go? I'm really trying to be more laid back, but this neighbor is really pushing my buttons!

P.P.P.P.S. Off to Utah tomorrow! Wish us luck on the flights. Oy.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Yeah Fall!

Summers here pretty much suck. I'll admit that this summer was unusually un-humid, but generally, they are hot and humid; it's not pretty. However, spring and fall are typically very lovely. (For example, Sunday was 70 degrees. Awesome!)

When my sister was in college, she was a nurse at a summer camp in Connecticut. I remember she said that taking drives there was no fun; you couldn't see anything because all the trees got in the way. I couldn't really understand that. But boy do I understand now. There are sooo many trees and they make sooo many leaves. It's crazy. (I won't mention that my tax dollars pay for a big leaf vacuum that comes and vacuums up people's leaves. Nope, not one word about it.) Rhett loved walking through the leaves and it's certainly an activity I can support. Can you believe how big that one leaf is?! Let's not forget his head is in the 80th percentile, people. This thing is HUGE!

And just because Halloween is over, doesn't mean I can't dress up my kid in Halloween pajamas. Honestly, pajamas are my favorite thing that Rhett wears. I would love to keep him in pajamas all day. And yes, they glow in the dark. How fun are they?

Monday, November 16, 2009

Habitat for Hubanity: the Pantry

Since the inception of TV-free Mondays, Mondays have turned into big work parties. They're the days we worked on the yard. The days that Chuck and I switched the master bedroom from upstairs to downstairs. And now, the day that we lined the shelves in the pantry.

I saw the contact paper at Target and felt inspired. That and the fact that the cans in the pantry are turning the shelves black. That helped too. The first picture is obviously the before picture.

And these show the end product. I am really pleased with how they turned out.

The containers for flour, sugar, etc., are my favorite things in my pantry. Thanks Mom!

For full disclosure, I must confess that this project did not take place on a Monday night. It was scheduled to, but this most recent Monday was just too rough a day and neither of us was up for the job. But don't worry; we'll be back to regular Monday work days soon.

The next project I would like to tackle is painting the shutters. Has anyone every done this? I don't know where to start; we can't even figure out how to get them off the house.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Go Rhett Go

And not only does he "stop" the dogs, but he tells us when to stop at traffic lights, and other appropriate stopping times. Oh man, I love this boy.

Again, please ignore my voice. Yikes.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

What Would Good Neighbors Do?

What you see here is an aerial picture of my house (with the digitally-added smiley roof) and the house next door. As you can see, we share a driveway. Right now, that house is vacant (a victim to foreclosure) and Chuck (the green car) and I (the yellow car) have full access to the neighbor's half of the shared driveway. Of course we never park in that half, but we do use it to get around each other's cars.

However, one of our other neighbors has started using this driveway for their own personal vehicle's use (the red car). This is not only illegal but a complete nuisance to us! So here's the question: what do we do?

As we see it, we have a few options:
1. Leave a note on their car asking them to kindly not park there. This one is scary because it will obviously come from us. I mean, which other neighbor would give a fig about who is using this driveway ? Not one. And I really don't want to come off as the type of person who cares about this, even if I am the type of person who cares about this.
2. Put up a sign on the fence at the end of the driveway that says "No Parking." We'd do this at night, dressed in all black to avoid being seen. The violators would assume this came from the bank that owns the house and presumably stop parking there.
3. Report it to the county' housing authority. Not sure what they'd do, but I can do it and even anonymously. (I'm such a wimp.)
4. Do nothing. We take a couple of deep breaths and repeat the mantra, "It doesn't matter. It doesn't matter." We will be the first to admit that we're upset about this more because it ruins our beautiful little parking setup rather than the legality of the issue.

I want to be a good neighbor, but I also want our driveway back!

Monday, November 9, 2009

You've Lost that Lovin' Feeling

In every edition of the Washington Post Magazine is a feature called "Date Lab." And it is what it sounds like: a blind date service. People apply, go on a date with someone with whom he/she should be compatible, take pictures during the date, and then it gets written up for the magazine for the entire DC metro area to read over Sunday morning coffee cake. One couple even got married! (Read an example here...with a Mormon...a Mormon whom I know!)

But in Sunday's edition of Date Lab, they put out the word that they're looking for couples who are already married. Says Date Lab, "Even if you've found The One, it's easy to lose sight of the romance once you fall into a routine. But married couples need a good date once in a while, too...Tell us why you and your significant other are long overdue for a date...We'll choose our favorite response, send that couple out to dinner, then write about it in the magazine."

This is what I sent. Think we'll win!?

"If it’s oatmeal, it must be Wednesday. And no, I’m not kidding. Generally I love schedules: schedules for meals, chores, events. You name it and I’ll find a calendar appropriate for it. When a son joined my husband and me 19 months ago, my love for schedules grew even more. But for some reason, my husband and I have not been able to schedule time for just the two of us.

I like to blame this on a couple of things. First, we didn’t really learn to date. Before we were married we had a long-distance relationship. After we were married and before the little guy came, we did almost everything together, so it seemed like a three-and-a-half year date. We never learned to make it formal however.

Second, I’m cheap. When we travel, I’ll pack sandwiches for us so we don’t have to eat fast food on the road. (I like to say that it’s more about the quality of the food rather than the money, but really, it’s about the money.) We are pretty good at earning and saving money and feel like responsible adults, but this definitely comes at a cost.

Third, did I mention the 19-month-old? Because he’s definitely the biggest culprit. Being first-time parents means we’re still getting used to this parenting thing. Between a husband who works full-time and a wife who works part-time outside of the home, we both feel the hardest job is inside the home with the little guy! When he goes down for the night, so do we. This does not leave a lot of time for dating.

The light at the end of the tunnel is that there is desire! Both he and I would love to go on a date, so come on Date Lab…make it happen!"

Saturday, November 7, 2009

No New Car For Me

Sad to report, but I will not be getting a new car. Although it was possibly my fastest time yet (25:55), it does not justify the VW Eos. And really, neither would a time of 24:00.

I have to say, I was a little disappointed in my time. The race was almost an out-and-back. At the turnaround point, the girl said that we were half-way done. Hooray! When I get back to where I thought was the end, I started really pushing myself to finish strong. Imagine my dismay when I saw that we had to keep going--a half mile to go. I had just given everything I had and therefore barely had that extra half mile in me. So that last half mile was really tough. But I finished. Let's just hope it's enough to earn me points!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Just In Case You Were Wondering...

...he's all boy. (Notice the hand placement.)

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

My Prize

This year I made a goal to finish in the top 10 (for my age group and gender) in six races hosted by my running club. It's all part of something they do called the "Championship Series" and I wanted part of it. I don't expect to get a prize at the end, but rather it was something I wanted just for me. Currently I have five races down and only one more to go. On Saturday (a day predicted to have perfect running weather) I run my final Championship Series race: a flat 5K.

Chuck said that if I run this race in 24:00 or less, I can have this car. What do you think? Can I do it? (See more pictures here.)

I'm not usually a girl who is in love with cars, but this one, ooooh, this one is much different. I love this car. I get excited when I see it on the road. I want this car so very badly that I might run my race at a pace which will cause me to puke at the end of it. That's how badly I want this car.

(Of course, none of that matters because there's no way we'd actually buy this car. But sometimes it's fun to imagine.)