Friday, July 21, 2017

A Modest Home Improvement

Before: North end of Porch
Because we have essentially decided that Casa de Icarus is no longer going to be our Forever Home,
we have initiated a new Home Improvement Protocol.  Basically we are only putting money into the house where it is needed, either to fix something that is broken or improve it for resale purposes.

Since we cannot do everything at once, we are doing the essentials first (see new dishwasher), followed by the things we can enjoy while we are still here (see new washer and dryer).  After that, minor trivial things that don't cost too much will be considered.

So I decided to get an outdoor electrical outlet installed on the north side of the house.  For the most part, the existing outlet on the south-side works fine, except in the few use cases where it doesn't.  

I'm not sure why there wasn't already one there in the first place.  Some previous owner put a lighting system under our front porch, along with a cement foundation which makes for excellent storage.  So adding an outlet would be a no brainer for someone with electrician mad skills.
After: Now with MORE POWER

 In any event, now I can put holiday decorations without having to run extension cords under the stairs and risk anyone tripping and potentially suing us.  We can even hang lights on our roof now.

It wasn't out of the ballpark but it certainly wasn't cheap.  I did my research and found someone who quoted me south of $200.  Although it actually did come out to $200 and that doesn't include the $50 outlet I bought from Home Depot because we had a little money to spend.

Update:  I should include costs.  The GE 2-20 Backyard Outlet cost $47.  I went with this one because it has 4 plugs.  It also cost me $200 to have the work done (quoted: "
As discussed; we will just charge you labor and material NOT TO EXCEED $200.00.
I really think total will be around $170.00 though."  Dan Schacke Home Comfort Services, Inc.
Naturally I would have preferred it cost less, but it was around the price everyone else quoted me, so fine.  


Thank you for reading and I hope you will comment below.  Please also do any and all of the following:

Follow Mysteries of Life on Twitter (@MysteriesOLife), Facebook or subscribe via email.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Bedtime for toddlers

I should have been chronicling this better but we are in this new phase where the kids only want to sleep with us.  For a long time one or both would get up in the middle of the night and make noise until we would pick them up and take them back to our room.  Then it shifted to them starting out in our bed in the first place. 

Sometimes I would take one into the spare bedroom so that we weren't squished because even a King sized bed is too small when your toddlers sleep perpendicular to the bed. 

Of course this means none of us get a good night’s sleep so the kiddos don’t want to get up in the morning.  Which makes it harder to get ready in the morning.  Assuming they are not being mommy-centric and will let me dress them, we still are pushing getting out the door in a timely fashion

I bought a bunk bed off Wayfair thinking that would solve the problem.  It sort of did for a short time.  Now I get to sleep in the bottom bunk (a full size thankfully) with one or both of them until they fall asleep and I can sneak back into our bed.

The next step is to get rid of our old bed.  We don't get many guests these days and if needed, we do have a blowup mattress.  Once the bed is gone, we can reconvert the nursery back into an office.  I'm thinking we can ship the old bed to my in-laws once they get their new house and they can either hold onto it until we move down or keep it. 


Thank you for reading and I hope you will comment below.  Please also do any and all of the following:

Follow Mysteries of Life on Twitter (@MysteriesOLife), Facebook or subscribe via email.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Standard Polish Operating Procedure

Running before work is not an option these days.  Neither is running after work.  I sometimes manage to get a short run in during lunch but I'm always stressed about getting back to my desk before anyone is looking for me.  I really look forward to my before work on Friday runs.

Unfortunately, those are going away too.  The kids are just taking too long to get ready for school and mixed in with our own apathy about getting moving in the morning, by the time I drop the kids at daycare and Nightingale at the train, it's time to start my day.  Now that it's summer, it's gonna be too hot to run during lunch break.  And besides, I have found that I have a better chance of doing it if I get it out of the way earlier in the day, especially if I have mini projects to complete around the house before break.

Random Burrito Joint in Jefferson Park

And my mother won't fucking leave our house!  Take this morning, as we are heading out to take the kids to daycare, she tells me she is going to clean up and then go.  I get back and she tells me that she is going to pay her bills online and then go.  She prints every payment which takes forever because she functions in a pre-2004 technology mindset.  I also asked her to help me with something and took 10 minutes so that will set her back 4 hours.

I cannot concentrate when she is here.  We even almost got into a fight over the most stupid thing until I realized what was going on and deescalated it.

Mom: can this [some stupid glass item that could easily wait until tomorrow or be hand-washed] be washed in the bottom drawer [of dishwasher]?  It won't fit in the top.

Me:  I don't see why not. [meaning I don't see why it couldn't be put in the bottom.]

Mom:  Because it won't fit I tried [thinking I was doubting her statement, not answering her question.]

Realizing this, I pointed out that we had a miscommunication and even said "this is why we get into fights."

She immediately changed the subject as if the conversation never occurred.


Thank you for reading and I hope you will comment below.  Please also do any and all of the following:

Follow Mysteries of Life on Twitter (@MysteriesOLife), Facebook or subscribe via email.