Thursday, October 15, 2009

House Work

Well, I spent the whole day, literally from sun up to sun down, working on the house. All the moulding has been pried up, all the doors are off. We've big sanded two rooms, now we have one more bedroom, the hallway, and the edges before we switch to a different grade of sandpaper and start the whole thing over again. And when that's done we repeat it all again. It's called "finishing" and while I don't mind the work, it sure takes a while. There's also hardwood floor underneath the carpet, so we're hopefully ripping that up and refinishing it too. If there's time. However, now that all the moulding is up, all there is to do tomorrow is sanding. And more sanding. And MORE sanding. However, I'm in love with my Bosch 5" orbital sander. It's AMAZING. So easy to use, and does so well. I really hope we're done by Saturday, because we need to use that day to stain and put down polyurethane. We did as much as we could on Wednesday, but we closed at 2:30 instead of 9:30, so we lost a lot of time I had expected to be able to work. However, in that vein, I need to get to bed. Gotta get up early so I can get this sanding done (hopefully ALL by this time tomorrow).

Monday, October 12, 2009


In doing what I can, I have to recommend my realtor to ANYONE in the Colorado Springs area. I will have a handful of her cards with me at all times and give them out to anyone and everyone. Her name is Karol Vander Pleug, here is her website. I wish I could do her more favors than just advertising my experience on my dinky blog, which barely anyone reads, and certainly no one that I know of in Colorado, but I have to do it anyway. She is AMAZING. Above and beyond the call of duty, always. We made an offer on a short sale home, which has been an extremely long, arduous process, back in May. Five months later, we are finally close to closing on our home.

Not only has she done more work and haggling behind the scenes than I'll ever know about, but she's also putting in the physical effort of going out to the house with us and taking care of the improvements necessary for the house to pass the VA Inspection. She also pursued and got for us a $2,500 credit from the sellers homeowners insurance company towards a roof replacement. She's also showed us the house several times and is full if helpful advice and information. If it wasn't a short sale, all of our closing costs would have been covered. I cannot recommend her enough. We looked at many houses in our price range, and most were so bad I wouldn't even go further than the front door. We managed to find a diamond in the rough, and it was mostly due to her perseverance and effort. I was losing hope we'd find anything that was move in ready, but we did. And Karol has been wonderful through this whole process. So please, if you need a realtor, call her.


I'm not going to rant, even though I'm extremely irritated. But DO NOT sign up for Vonage unless you want to be ripped off. I understand the one year service contract, that's not a problem. The problem is that when I called to cancel my service (terminating on Oct 29, 2009) they told me that I'm magically in a 2 year agreement and can't cancel until Oct 29, 2010. So apparently they're a scam. Who would have thought, right? So do yourself a favor a stick with your cell phone or go with your cable provider. Cable you can turn off anytime you want to, and they don't backhand you into contracts you didn't agree to.

Sunday, October 11, 2009


We have Seth for a LONG time tonight. From now until 1 or so, when Hedy and Ryan get back from the Used concert. I just hope we can entertain him for that long. He's an awesome kid, so well behaved, but obviously we don't have toys, so we just have what he brought over with him, the tv, dog toys, the pets themselves, and my art supplies. That was adequate last time, but like I said, this is a longer sit job. We're going to order Chinese (yum) and I'm going to try to do some packing and knitting, but I'm not at full strength because of the surgery, so I'm counting on David to help me out. I think we're going to set Seth up with the electric drum set and let him play along with David on Guitar Hero. Hopefully he'll find that fun.

I made our Uhaul reservations today, hopefully everything will continue to go according to plan and we'll close on Wednesday. I don't have much more to add to that.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

House Preparations

David and I went out to the house today and scraped paint off that was flaking and cleaned up paint that the hired workers left on the ground. The VA Appraiser didn't like the paint issues, and the workers were supposed to go out again in preparation for the final inspection yesterday or today, except when we went out and checked on the house, there were still paint chips on the ground and flaking paint on the trim of the back porch. We called Karol, of course, but since this is crunch time and Monday is a holiday, we didn't want to have to delay the closing because of paint. There's also been what we presume is a neighbors car parked in the driveway for the past two times we have been there. This time we left a note on the windshield saying that the house was under contract and the new owners would be on the property on Wednesday, and that if the car wasn't moved by then it would be towed. Hopefully they'll move it by then, because having the car towed would be extremely inconvenient. However, at this point we're still on schedule for a closing at 0930 on Wednesday. How very exciting! Now it's time to get back to packing. We've gotten quite a bit done so far, but there's still a lot left to do between now and moving time. At least I have David until the 29th, which is a good week longer than I was planning for.

My surgery went well, but I'm tired, drugged, and really sore. My shoulders, especially my right one, hurt so much I can't describe it as anything but being stabbed repeatedly by a very sharp knife. When I woke up this morning I could feel the gas from the laparoscopy gurgling around under my ribs. It was very uncomfortable. And my abdomen itches, and is sore. But it's really my shoulders that are the worst.

Time to get back to work.

What I'll do when I'm healthy

I'm decided to make a list, since I have some hope now that a nerve block will get rid of my pain. I'm going to make a link on my sidebar and update it as thoughts come.

  • Run a marathon
  • Compete in an equestrian three-day event
  • Join the U.S. SAR Task Force
  • Spend 27 months in the Peace Corps
  • Join the National Guard
  • Volunteer with Red Cross Disaster Services
  • Take a martial arts class, potentially kickboxing
  • Learn how to train SAR dogs
  • Spend 5 weeks a year volunteering internationally
  • Visit all of the destinations in "1,000 Places to See Before You Die."
  • Donate blood as often as allowed
  • Take a glass blowing class
  • Get a pilots license
  • Write my book series
  • Make a ton of fun costumes to wear whenever I need a pick me up
  • Backpack through Europe
  • Road trip all 50 states in America/Canada, maybe even Mexico
  • Learn how to ballroom dance
  • Make a CD, of my own music, performed by me, just for me
  • Volunteer in a nursing home
  • Volunteer as a kids tutor
  • Get my bachelors degree
  • Volunteer for the United Nations
  • Go skydiving
  • Learn/go scuba diving
  • Adopt children
  • Foster pets
  • Help create/fund a no kill animal shelter (w/Hedy maybe)
  • Swim with dolphins
  • Ride in a hot air balloon
  • Learn how to quilt
  • Go on a cruise (0r 2, or 20)
  • Build a hobbit hole
  • Grow a garden that supports my yearly need for fruits/veggies/herbs
  • Get a motorcycle license
  • Get a tattoo (0r 3)
  • Write a children's book series
  • Join a bowling league
  • Go fishing and gut the fish myself
  • Go snowboarding
  • Become a citizen of the world
  • Become multilingual
  • Live in a foreign country
  • Learn to play the guitar
  • Write a piano composition
  • Learn how to belly dance
  • Have a six-pack
  • Join a choir
  • Go hang gliding
  • Climb a mountain
  • Go up in one of those anti gravity planes
  • Better yet, go to space
  • Ride with a Thunderbirds pilot
  • Go white water rafting
  • Be an extra in a movie
  • Go to Mardi Gras in New Orleans
  • Visit all past and present Seven Wonders of the World
  • Learn Gaelic
  • Learn Czech
  • Ride the 10 biggest roller coasters in the world
  • Visit Grotta Azzurra
  • Take up astronomy
  • Learn woodworking
  • Make a stained glass window
  • Fold 1000 origami cranes
  • Build a Habitat for Humanity home
  • Join a Big Sister program
  • Buy a bicycle and give up as much driving as possible
  • Live in Paris
  • Spend a week at a 5 star spa
  • Shop in Rodeo Drive
  • Drive a Lamborghini
  • Sleep in a castle
  • Paint a series of, well, paintings
  • Retire by age 50
  • Milk a cow
  • See gorillas in the wild
  • Compete in a dog sled competition
  • Grow a bonsai tree
  • Have an orchid garden
  • Have a library in my home
  • Attend a TED conference
  • Build a telescope
  • Learn Tai Chi
  • Have a past life regresson
  • Have an out of body experience
  • Collect music boxes
  • Write an auto-biography
  • Trace my ancestry
  • Build a tree fort
  • Visit all seven continents
  • Drink a vintage wine
  • Create a sacred space
  • Be able to wear a bikini without shame
  • Mosh in a pit
  • Sing to an audience
  • Develop super powers
More to follow!

Monday, October 5, 2009


I'm taking a deep breath, letting my negative emotions go, and refocusing. It's very difficult to remember what's important, and not let things get to me. While I would hesitate severely to label myself a firebrand, but I am more than up to the task of rising to the occasion. Forgive and forget in not my mantra. Once wronged I tend to hang onto that wrong for a long time, especially when an apology is not forthcoming. I don't enjoy conflict, and try to avoid it, but when it's forced upon me I flip into "winning" mode. I still derive pleasure from times I've bested people. I think back with a smile and say to myself, "That's right, don't fuck with me." (Pardon my language, I'm trying to stop cursing, but that is what I think). However, in the big scheme of things, none of it really matters. It hurts, but it doesn't matter. I let the bad get to me too much. Hence the deep breath, getting back to my Buddhist roots (doesn't that sound better than an atheist philosopher? Not that there haven't been a lot of those...) and finding what I enjoy again.

Often I find that my life lacks meaning. I wake up and wonder why I get out of bed, when I don't do anything. However, I can find more to do than getting past my depression sometimes allows. Life is full of conflicts and strife, and one way or another I would have to deal with it. Nothing is perfect. We're dealing with an extremely stupid apartment rule, for example. I'm trying not to let it bother me. There is hope on the horizon though. It's called a spinal nerve block. I'm not exactly sure what kind they'll give me, as there seem to be many different kinds, but according to Dr. Hemsworth (who gave me my referral to a pain management specialist today!!!) I will get something short lived in nature, and if that works, there are longer term options. We may be looking at destroying the nerves in that area of my abdomen altogether, which sounds serious, and probably is, but I would go through much worse to be rid of this pain. It may be time to start thinking about, "Wow, I'm able to have a life plan again." What do I want to do? I don't know anymore, it's been so long since I could attempt anything that requires a long term commitment. Without pain my possibilities are endless. I am holding on to my reservations until a treatment has been successful, but after this long, I don't think I would know what to do with myself if it was sprung upon me suddenly. But in theory David could give me his GI bill benefits. I could go back to college! What for? What do I want to do??? Can you imagine? Because I can't. Another deep breath. One step at a time.

David should be back from the dog park soon, and I'm going to see if he wants to go to the library with me. Time to get a library card! There are so many books I want to read, but I don't feel like buying them all. Not only is there the cost of the book, there's the cost of buying more bookcases, because the two I have are already full. I'm excited!

We close in 8 days!!! I know what I'm doing for the next week! Packing, planning, and pricing. woot woot! We're so excited!