10:27 PM

Confront me if I don't ask for help.

Remember the movie 28 Days? With Sandra Bullock? At one point she has to wear a sign around her neck that says "Confront me if I don't ask for help.".....I'm thinking that maybe I need that sign....

Tonight I dropped a perfectly good air conditioner out of my dining room window.

No, I didn't open the window and just drop it out. I spent a half hour adding plywood pieces to stabilize it and then a little shelf thing for it to sit on...which I secured with 1 inch screws....into 1/2 inch or more plywood...then I put the metal sleeve the air conditioner fits in onto the shelf thingy and screwed that in. I heaved the air conditioner in and went to get the front panel - I looped the controller through the panel and went to click the front panel on and it wouldn't fit.

Want to know why it wouldn't fit? Um the whole air conditioner had started to slide out the window....and of course now that I had the front panel wedged in the window, I couldn't get a hold of the air conditioner. Good thing I built up the front flower bed and filled it with shredded cedar!

Next I zipped outside and dragged and heaved the damn thing back inside the front door. I live on a fairly busy street but I don't think anyone saw the series of events above...if they did, they are likely still peeing their pants right now.

So....home reno lessons learned today:

  • - Bleach makes you high but also gets rid of stuffy sinuses (I cleaned the inside trailer walls earlier today)
  • - Never turn down a cookie from a good looking guy at a home improvement place...you'll wish you'd accepted and bantered it into a drink or something (I am going to run out of flooring so maybe I'll get another shot at that)
  • - 1 inch screws are not enough....I think this is true pretty much all of the time lol

I am going to claim that the reason I didn't foresee the drop of doom for the air conditioner was the bleach (and later melamine paint) which I inhaled working in the small confines of the trailer earlier today.

Tomorrow, Jorge is coming to help me with setting up the air conditioner so that when I get the new controller part I ordered for an exorbitant amount online (I do love that you can find anything online!) I won't drop it out the window again. I hope the only thing that broke was the controller!

He's also going to look at helping me replace the window cranks in the trailer which are stripped. That involves drilling out rivets...which I am uncomfortable with....unlike putting a heavy air conditioner in a window by myself....

Gwen: Believe it or not, I can make this decision on my own, okay? I don't need your help.
Gerhardt: That's not what your neck sign says.
Gwen: Oh, forget what my neck sign says!

Imaginary Gwen to Gwen: You know you're screwed. Mm-hmm.

9:33 PM

Just say no? but why?

So the other night, on the eve of one of our nicest days here in weeks, I felt like maybe I was coming down with a cold. And of course being the subscriber to anything the drugstore offers to head off (or control the symptoms of) anything cold or flu-like I broke out the Cold-FX and oil of oregano pronto. And that night I had the most interesting technicolor dreams going on....first my cousin had decided to sell their house with a view and move down the hill but the house that they were going to reno to suit them had another house that came with it that was much smaller but perfect for guess who? And at a price of about 1/2 of what most houses in that neighborhood were going for! I could picture baseboards, hardwoods, the walks to Starbucks, the whole nine yards!

But the next dream was by far the most entertaining. One of my single girlfriends, recently a mom was getting married. Of course the focus of the dream was not the groom who was a blurry but attractive figure at best; but on the colorful dresses, choirs (yes multiple!) and musical performances including her son on rollerskates at one point. It can best be described as a cross between The Sound of Music and Highschool Musical.

Best entertainment I've had in a while....and seems like the cold has gone away too! Maybe this is why people are into "natural remedies"?

7:03 PM

Mending fences

After finding out from the utility companies that they had crisscrossed my yard with both a power line and gas line; thus making it impossible to safely dig post holes or to add an inner chain link fence, my dad and I (and the former boy next door) undertook fence repairs.

Repairs also rather than replacement based on the cost of lumber which is about as atrocious as gas prices! I have also hacked at the dogwood some more. It actually seems to be growing more than when I started hacking at it 2 years ago - go figure!

Yes, I realize that the monkey bars need painting and the back fence also needs some attention. Unfortunately those things will have to wait for Fall. This weekend I have high hopes of working on the trailer....which it turns out is still leaking from somewhere...

9:40 PM

The good ones screw you, the bad ones screw you, and the rest don't know how to screw you.

So this week I went out on 2 dates...with the same person. Both dates went on extraordinarily long which some would think was a good sign. From the perspective of there being lots of conversation and also being interactive - we played pool and went bowling as well as dinner - I had a good time. But then when I began to think over the conversations and few of the comments which had been made that I had previously brushed off, my spidey senses started up. Way too many things that reminded me of my ex; red flags if you will:

- All of the women in his past were liars, cheaters, or were convinced he was a liar and a cheat and acted crazily or were mentally ill
- He knows a lot about computers and security and has a multi-thousand dollar system
- Very recently separated and had a child with his ex very soon into their relationship
- Lots of discussion around having been a bad kid and getting into fights - but he is reformed now
- Not so subtle mentions of all of the women online who are hitting on him or who have hit on him in the past
- Likes to observe people and read a lot of psychology books when he was in his 20s
- When asked "so tell me some good things about yourself" said he wasn't good at that

The good news is that apparently my spidey senses are functioning. The bad news is that there are more like my ex out there and I seem to find them.

Other classics from the online dating world include:

- the 22 yr old who informed me that age is just a number and then that his older female friend thought I was attractive and wondered if I was interested in women (you'd think I'd mention that in my profile?)
- the married 42 yr old who was looking for some safe clean fun (and conversation, of course!)
- the 51 yr old...enough said...

Now I remember why I stopped going out on dates in the Fall.

(The quote used for the title comes from Samantha in the Sex and the City movie).

6:32 PM

My women's renovation network

Why I love my girlfriends...after I emailed L'Oreal to say I'd run into an ex on the train and was a bit stunned and shaken, I received this perfect response:

Did you accidentally spill coffee and blister his boys for him? WHICH IS WHAT YOU SHOULD HAVE DONE!!!!!"

I also have friends who:

- know how to install a toilet (among other major household reno tasks)
- taught me how to paint (an invaluable skill as it has turned out) "more painting, less talking" was the accompanying suggestion
- can sew anything from curtains to dress inserts to boat thingamajig covers
- bake cookies with vodka in them...and created a drink called the kinky pinky...still good today!
- can make me laugh no matter what
- have shown up, called or reached out at the right time and said and done the right things or just been there and said or done nothing when needed

"A friend hears the song in my heart and sings it to me when my memory fails."
-- Anonymous

11:23 AM

Time after time

"You say, go slow. I fall behind"....

That is exactly what it feels like when you rent a van at Home Depot to haul the stuff you haven't yet bought on a Saturday when everyone else is at the depot to get their garden and deck stuff.

After switching back to summer tires yesterday (and thinking the guy at Country Tire was cute and doing absolutely nothing about it) I decided that I needed to finish the front retaining wall for the flower beds. It looked kind of dumb half-done on one side. So off I went to Home Depot after calling to make sure that I could rent a van from them (none in Airdrie of course) since 500lbs of stuff in the trunk would not be good for my little Mazda...a new way to look at having a lot of junk in the trunk but probably not a good idea.

Anyway, the guy there gave me 45 mins to get my stuff and then I had an hour and a half to get home, unloaded and back with a gas receipt proving I had filled up again.

If you've ever seen Home Depot on a Saturday then you know that this is a lot like running a gauntlet...get to the garden centre at the far end of the store, find a flatbed cart, try not to get distracted by all the plants and trees and shiny things, locate the bricks and start loading, crush a finger between two bricks; utter obscenities and realize you've snapped a nail, continue, tour the plants section and pick up a few shrubs and some flowers, realize the till is lined up 15 people deep so head inside with the cart weighing about 400 lbs, check out and load van, realize you need gravel, head back inside, search the garden centre and give up on the kind that you want and pick some that is probably twice the price, time check 1 hr 20min left to get home and unloaded and back, check out again, load the van next to 2 guys casually loading their truck who make no effort to help or get out of the way, look at the time and decide against a 3rd trip into the store for fence stuff, hit the road, stop and lock the van doors due to fear that they will open on the Deerfoot and create a scene, get onto the Deerfoot which is under reduced speedlimit for construction, get home and haul ass unloading stuff, head back with 20min to get there with gas stop....make it just under the wire, sweating and with brick dust in a lot of places that it shouldn't be - eyes, ears, nose and down the front of my tanktop, locate the car and head home.

On the way home I decided I needed a slurpee so I stopped at the local 7-11 and discovered a new favorite flavor - pink grapefruit!

Then I started on the wall and when I went to place the bricks I realized that I had the wrong kind...or half of the wrong kind...for them to stack together properly. After an almost meltdown I decided that it was only 2 rows so wasn't a structural issue and that I wasn't going to haul back half the bricks and go through the exercise above again. Of course it is bugging me a bit that it's not quite done right but I'm hoping that will pass. In any case it looks better than before. Unfortunately, it also looks like the grass needs mowing again (in less than a week!) and it needs to be trimmed back from the walk.

This was the house before:

Today I still need to plant the shrubs and decide if I want any more - I'm thinking I may just buy a couple of bigger ones for the back or I may just save my energy for the upcoming fence that has to be torn down and rebuilt. And yes, suggestions for getting rid of the horrible dogwood that I have been chopping at for 3 summers now are welcomed.

Most recent run: screw the running...I hauled 38 x 9lbs of bricks plus 5 x 40lbs of rock plus misc. plants = a homemade workout

Days left to train for run: see above

Dates since last post: 0...including one recent chattee from online who informed me he's now "seeing someone that looks like it has potential so sorry and good luck"...I can't decide if this is better than just disappearing (which I have also been guilty of), laughable or what. Maybe I need more new tires...