A Day in the Life, House & Home, Kids, Married Life

Update Rant

I lied.  I said I would probably update tomorrow as part of my 365 Project but I’m gonna do it today instead.

So what’s been happening with us?

Me:  My Lyrica dose was upped.  I’m still on what’s considered a low-dose (100mg) because the dose can go up to 500mg/daily.  I was also advised and placed placed on an ibuprofen regimen, at least one tablet/capsule daily.  Which is not hard considering I still end up taking ibuprofen every other day to begin with.  This just started the week of Christmas so still a bit early to say if it’s helping.  I’m also working more on “me”.  I picked out a new skincare regimen because I was starting to have really consistent breakouts and skin-bumps (those little red irritated bumps that aren’t acne).  So now I’m on a full-blown Philosophy system.  I have the Purity One-Step and Microdelivery Exfoliating Wash, plus a little facial scrubby brush.  I also have the Renewed Hope in a Jar (both for eye and face).  So far my skin is doing much better.  I don’t use the exfoliating wash often since I have sensitive skin, I have used it about once a week (on week 3 now).  But I’ve seen faster healing on blemishes that do appear and blemishes are as big on top of the clearing up faster.  So that’s pretty good.  Plus the esthetician told me to expect a light breakout when I started using the scrubby brush because apparently everyone has one when they switch to the brush.    I also bought all new make-up but I’ll discuss that another time because this has already turned into a ridiculously long paragraph about me.

DD: We started the PEID program right before Christmas.  Our goals are to get her to be more vocally expressive.  She doesn’t talk much and doesn’t have nearly as many words that she uses compared to other kids her age and is no wear close to sentences (which is what she’s supposed to be starting with at 2).  She will grab you and drag you to what she wants.  Or she’ll skip the adults entirely and go do it herself (her problem-solving skills are an outlier for her age, she’s months ahead).  So we’re working on it.  Oh, and she dislocated her elbow again.

Hubby: Here’s the big one.  Back in late October, Hubby had a CT scan because he’s been having severe migraines for most of the year.  We finally got the results back in the first week of December.  They found an arachnoid cyst near his cerebellum.  Now, a lot of researching has yielded that these are usually benign, often are found while being tested for other things, and sometimes are present even from birth.  They usually show no signs or symptoms and are often just left alone.  But!  Hubby has a migraine that he has had since December 17.  Still.  He has been on Imitrex (and finished it in a week), has been to the ER for possible meningitis, and has been basically bed-ridden for the last week.  He has an appointment with a neurologist on January 9th and hopefully we’ll figure something out, maybe putting him on a migraine prevention regimen like I was on years ago for my chronic headaches (prior to fibro diagnosis and prior to pregnancy–the hormones seemed to have assisted with this as the frequency of my migraines/headaches has decreased, although the severity is still up there).  We ended up in the ER when he started having neck stiffness and heaviness/tingling in his limbs.  Added to that was the fever he’d run several days prior and his PCP wanted to rule out the possibility of viral meningitis (don’t get me started on the hospital trip because that was a nightmare!)

So that’s part of what’s been keeping me busy because I’ve been working 40+ hours a week and then coming home to take care of everyone and the animals and the house (all of the house since Hubby usually is no help these days).  I finished my fall session of classes with A’s so a straight 4.0.  Brought my GPA to 3.5 overall so I was very happy about that.  Spring session starts in 2 weeks on the 16th.  Hopefully I can keep this grades thing going.  I was mad that I got my bachelor’s with only a 3.2 considering I’d managed to keep a 3.8 through my AAS and the first year of my BS.  Stupid O. Chem.  The only saving grace is that I wasn’t the only one whose GPA dropped thanks to that class.  Considering that the school came down on the professor and made him curve the second half of the course so that more than 2/3 of the class didn’t fail…yeah.  All four of those classes were ree-donk-u-lous! (Yes four, 2 lectures and 2 labs all taught by the same guy and all 4 pulled my grades down.  It still irks me how weird he graded things like half the material we were tested on wasn’t even covered in class, we were expected to learn it from the textbooks on our own!)

~M

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Being A Grown Up, DIY & Crafting, House & Home, Invisible Illness

Getting stuff done

So I don’t know how other people spend their free time but I spend mine these days split between cleaning and grad school.

And my house needs a good cleaning.

Over the last year+ it’s been so hard to find the energy to clean.  It was especially hard after DD became mobile and it cost me all my energy to keep up with her.  And that child is a small tornado!  What cleaning I do is half the time just picking up after her.  Forget any mess that I, hubby, the dog, or anything else makes around here.

So I spent a good hour cleaning today.  I feel very accomplished for it.  Then I started working on my candle stash.  I am TERRIBLE with candles.  I had to stop going to B&BW and Yankee Candles.  Currently I 12+ candles sitting in a cupboard, 2 in use in my living room and 3 in the bedroom.  Plus a Scentsy burner.  So I’ve been encouraged (read= ultimatum) to not buy any new candles until I get through all the ones I have.  That was 6 months ago (and 6 candles) ago.  I used to go through them much faster but with DD, not so much.

Today I pulled all my used candles and started cleaning them out.

So that’s what I’m working on.  Still have to wait for them to cool then a quick run through the washer and they’ll be good to go.

House & Home

The Big Move

So we have survived the big move.  The house is a disaster of course with boxes everywhere but we’re working our way through the stacks. 

Some of it is that we have furniture pieces it turns out don’t work with our new place so we have to look at new ideas for arranging things and of course that means whatever occupied that furniture (like a computer and its accessories lol) have no home and so can’t be unpacked yet. 

Plus we had a slight road bump during the move when a closet rod decided to come down.  Now we are looking at replacing it and closet systems in the rest of the closets too since they are all set up like the one with the bar that broke.  We are trying to accomplish 2 goals: give us better closet organizing options and prevent the same malfunction in other closets.

Lots to do this weekend between running errands and unpacking. 

It feels great to be in our own home though.  No more having to worry about neighbors getting disturbed when we vacuum at 2am because that’s when we’re up.  And when we’re done unpacking we can actually use our Kinect stuff without worrying about neighbors.  We can have people over without having to worry that they’re going to get towed.

Oh joys!  So glad to start this next chapter of our lives.

DIY & Crafting, House & Home

Home Improvement: Planning Phase

So with everything continuing along full-steam-ahead on the house (thankfully *knock on wood*) and our closing date now in less than a month (just over 4 weeks away, 8/22), we have officially felt comfortable enough to start looking at home improvement projects and setting our “Honey Do” list.  Now granted ours is more of a five-year-plan set up haha.

1.  Painting:  We know we want to paint Ducky’s room as soon as we move so we’ve already looked at colors and the 2 colors for her walls have been chosen.  We have an overall cream/beige color then the accent wall (which is also the window wall) will have a light spring green.  This color scheme will go with both the yellow and purple that we have picked out for her crib sets.  We have several long-term goals for painting but those fall under the “let’s live in the house a while first” category and will happen as we go.

2.  Bathrooms:  Both of the bathrooms in the house are full baths but the size is a little on the small side and the set up is that (to me) awkward one where the tub is on one side and the sink and toilet on the other.  So we have a plan to redo the master bathroom first (short of replacing the tub and fixtures, we’re talking major overhaul).  I’m still trying to figure out what we want to do with the main bathroom in the hallway, mostly because it is the main bathroom and the one that will see a lot of use, I’m trying to pick what I want to do with it that I won’t hate in a year!  The master bath was easy because I’m going with a similar sort of idea as what I want to do in the master bedroom.

3.  Fencing:  Our first major expense I want to take care of is fencing in the backyard.  This is not only a privacy and cosmetic thing, this is also for the dog.  He deserves a yard to run around in.  First thing is going to be getting the property surveyed and going from there.  There is a LOT of work that needs to be done in the yard but as we don’t think we’ll be moving out of that house any time soon (we’re talking 15-20 years even barring some major life changes) I’m not hugely worried about the yard.  I have started making plans and breaking those into steps.  The backyard needs to be seeded; we need a shed; and we’d both like an entertaining area.  These are things that can be taken care of next spring/summer/fall.

4:  Roof/HVAC:  We are moving into the house knowing that both of these will need to be addressed in the next five years.  As such we have a plan in place to have them addressed in the next 3 years.  We don’t want to do it in the first year because we want the house to be “lived in” for a while so we learn the house and it’s nuances.  Plus that gives us time to save up money (these are both fairly hard expenses on their own but factor in just having moved, commuting, and having an infant and I would rather wait and save the money to make sure we know what kind of budget we have before taking on a major expense like that, even if we get an installment payment plan).  Waiting until the 2nd/3rd year also gives us a chance to price-shop and really make sure we’re getting a good deal from a reputable source, plus a good warranty/maintenance plan/whatever.

5.  Kitchen:  My personal 5 year goal is to have redone the entire kitchen if possible.  Not full gut and remodel because it doesn’t need it.  I want to repaint the cabinets, replace the fixtures on them.  We have ugly formica counters so I want to replace/paint/tile those.  There is a wall and door that (if I can manage it without compromising structural integrity) I’d like to get rid of entirely to open the kitchen to the side exterior door and the 2 pantries (don’t ask about that, just nod and go with it).  We will also need a new fridge, not only does the house’s fridge have a giant dent in the door (we know exactly where it’s from and it’s part of why I want that wall mentioned earlier GONE), it is a bit older and not as energy efficient as current available models.  But I can wait a few years on the fridge.  Like I said, 5 year goal.

6.  Basement:  90% of the basement is unfinished.  There is a single finished bedroom in the basement.  There is framework set up in the basement for a bathroom (including the plumbing having been installed) and for a laundry room and a third ‘spare’ room.  I’d like to take down the framing for all but the bathroom (none of these are support structures, those are very clearly obvious in the basement) to open up the space until we decide how we want to use it, plus that gives us more storage space.  There is also under the stairs that has to be finished.  Our priority in the basement is the bathroom (since, again, it is already about 20% done).  Then we’ll work on the laundry space.  I don’t feel like a need a ‘room’ just for laundry so I’m already looking at turning it into more of a ‘closet’ sort of functionality.  But that’s for down the road in a few years.

Like I said, plans.  Lots of plans.  Putting together a whole notebook of house-related stuff.  Pricing fencing, washer/dryer, fridge, paint expenses, lawncare stuff, sheds.  Things that most people don’t think about but when you don’t have them and you know you’re going to need them…it’s easier to walk in knowing what you want and what your price-point is so you can shop around for good bargains.

We’re walking into this with big ideas and hopes but we also know we are undertaking a lot so we’re trying to not put the cart before the horse on any situation for home improvement.

Have you undertaken a home improvement project lately?  What did you do?  Did you have a budget and if so, did you stay on budget?  And tips, tricks, or ideas you want to share?

House & Home

Under Contract

We are under contract for our first house.  We are both excited.  We are also both ready to throw the next batch of contracts out of the window, we are that tired of initialing and signing things already.

If things go through we’ll be commuting to work but we’ll also be a lot closer to our family and friends.  The last 18 months of isolation since we moved closer to our jobs have been harder than we thought.  With Baby Ducky on the way, it’s just that much more important to us to move back to where our support network is.

Hopefully things go well and we’ll be moving in August.  And hopefully it will also be our last big move for many years.

House & Home

Run-Around

I hate when people give you the run-around, especially when it’s an established reputable organization, like say a school.

We need to provide a letter to the bank of Nick’s expected graduation date.  Simple right?  Apparently not.  First, it’s the wrong date.  Can we fix that to reflect the correct date?  They say we can…A gazillion phone calls and emails later, having been redirected to about a half dozen offices, still no one can fix his expected graduation date and mail us the darned letter!

I mean, how hard is this?  He’s a part-time student.  He has been the whole time he’s been attending.  He will be for the next several years!  Why did you give him an expected graduation for a full-time student in the first place?  And why does no one seem capable of correcting this?  At this rate we won’t be able to get approved after all because of this stupid school and they’re total disfunctionality.

I’m ready to drive my pregnant butt to this school and chew someone out.  This is why I hate long-distance learning.  You handle everything by phone and email and staff tends to put you off as “less important” than on-campus students simply because you aren’t in front of them to be dealt with face-to-face and a lot of them dismiss you.

Grrrr.

Has something like this happened to you?  How did you resolve it?

House & Home, Married Life

House-hunting (also known as stressor extraordinaire)

Hubby and I have been kicking around the housing market for several months now.  We weren’t looking in earnest up until recently (for several reasons).  Now with Ducky on its way and due for arrival in October, we’ve kicked into the official house hunting mode.

I thought I was stressed just browsing for fun, oy!  I think I’m getting gray hairs staring at the numbers.  Home price, land evaluation, HOA fees,  closing costs, down payment, taxable footage.  Ugh.  And that’s not even our visit to our home loan lady at the bank.

We did get pre-approved for a loan, albeit not at the numbers we were going for.  We have some wiggle room for improvement (and we can only improve thankfully/sadly) and we’re working on that.  It gives us a place to start.  It didn’t give us the options we were hoping to get.  Doesn’t help where we live/are looking to live doesn’t exactly have great housing prospects.

We just know that our apartment is small and having 2 adults plus an infant in it is going to get cramped.  We do have the comfort that we don’t have to get a house if we don’t find one we like in our price range.  Our lease on our apartment is good through January.  If that’s how long it takes to get where we want to be, then it takes that long.