Tuesday, May 29, 2012

paint and moose and paint

My hands are covered in three different colors of paint. Actually, four. Well, actually, i lie---because i did manage to shower before work this morning and scrub off most of it. There is still some unknown white color on my finger nails. Clearly, the trauma of spending three days straight painting has not washed off.

We spent the weekend painting:
  1. bamboo forest bedroom
  2. teal dining room
  3. dark blue accent living room wall
  4. light grey-blue bathroom
  5. enough touch-ups to walls to kill anyone

Here's the's the problem. Wait, first, here's the moose mama and her brand new twins from our backyard for you to look at while i bitch. They were super cute--she musta just dropped um.

 So, the problem is this, aside from the fact that i have NO expertise in painting and all our walls are strange heights and shapes, the old owners left the color they painted the walls, but not the ceiling. Should be an easy fix right--get some samples, paint little corners, blah blah. Well, here's what i have to say to all you DIY junkies---pffffffffft. I mean that in the nicest possible way. We went and got a million paper samples of the whites, held each up to the ceiling, eliminating all of the creams, grays, etc. We finally found a potential match and headed off to home depot for what must have been the 5th time in two days. They mixed up one of them three dollar containers and we headed back to the house, where i climbed my little ladder and painted in three different places. There's something about the lighting in the house that makes it so that the same color looks completely different in three places in the same room. Strangely, the pure white color i thought we had picked had a strange pinkish/brownish hue to it. Just enough that it looked like a cross between the old wall color and the ceiling. Mostly out of frustration we decided it was close enough. I hopped back in the car for HD round 6--where i insisted that they give me not only a quart of the offending pink/brown/white, but also pure honest to god white. Low and behold when the offensive color came out, it looked NOTHING like the sample. Seriously. So, that left me with THREE (yes i am using screamy capitals on purpose) different whites and i headed off home. Needless to say, i don't think we did find the "perfect" match, but it is close enough that unless i tell you we are playing spot the cover-up, you probably aren't going to notice.

Here's what i learned about painting this weekend:
  1. Buy an edger at the start and don't load it heavily with paint.
  2. Don't even try to free hand. Seriously.
  3. Don't ever color match to a different store--it will result in the loss of half a day's work and you will have to redo the whole thing because the colors will NOT be the same. 
  4. Invariably, you are going to get paint EVERYWHERE, including but not limited to floors, hair, face, and dog. 
Before and after photos as soon as we get all the art/pictures/SEA paraphernalia mounted on the walls. 

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Parental Anniversary Service--HELP WANTED

Nearly 4 decades ago, these two got hitched. They had a tiny wedding, in a living room and fed everyone food they cooked themselves.

This year, for their anniversary, they are participating in Relay for Life in the USVI. It is a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society.

As my dad says, "You may be aware that both of Lissa's parents were cancer victims, and I have had an uncle and an an aunt also succumb. Plus, I had my small bout with skin cancer a few years back. During my time with GlaxoSmithKline and its predecessors, I spent years in cancer research. I realize the need for continued research into the causes and cures for the multitude of diseases that we call cancer. 

I hope that you can support the battle by contributing to the relay and our team. Since we are both walking, I encourage you to split a donation so that we each share."

So, my friends and loved ones---so many of whom are adopted kiddos of these two fabulous folks...let's do a little service for them too. Any size contribution is welcome---it is the loving thought that counts. Their pages are: 

oh...and here's to many more of these:

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

if i won the lottery

Here are photos of things i would buy lots of:
One Cereal Bowl - Brown and Teal Pottery
Custom Order - Floating Entry Table - Modified IKEA shelf with two drawers - Ambrosia Maple, porcelain insulator pulls

Monday, May 21, 2012

Things i learned while moving...a list.

  1. if a zombie apocalypse does in fact come, as adam claims it will, i have enough black beans to feed us for weeks.
  2. the heavier the box the more likely Neah will need to escort it to its final destination.
  3. break out the power tools to assemble the back of target book cases
  4. i continue to have no idea why one bedside light being on causes the other to flicker. don't suggest anything. we are going with "party lights" rather than effed up electrical to keep my sanity.
  5. NEVER again will Adam and I move ourselves. I don't know how i didn't blog about this before, but basically...we are both such control freaks that every attempt to place our belongings in a vehicle results in near end of engagement/marriage. 
  6. it is truly possible to have your possessions magically expand to three times their previous space filling capacity LITERALLY overnight. 
  7. Even in a new place, a dog will be herself

Friday, May 18, 2012

Adam's eating Adventures...part II

Anyone who knows Adam (feel free to be witnesses and testify to the truth of this post, oh Adam friends) knows that there is just about NOTHING that he does with any sense of urgency. This is ESPECIALLY true when it comes to eating. The quote from last night being "Why does everyone have bills and to go boxes?? I'm still eating!!"

Part of this stems from the fact that he likes to compose each bite of food perfectly. It's been a couple years since i explained the Pho creations, but last night's efforts let me raise the specter again. Generally speaking, each bite of food--regardless of what it is--must contain the perfect proportion of ingredients, must be chewed the requisite 25 times, and must, must, must be pretty.

Hopefully you will forgive that i was ignoring this until close to the end, when i turned to notice that each piece of chicken had a little mushroom laid delicately upon it---waiting to be graced by his chopsticks. It's kinda artistic, no?

Please feel free to share your Adam eating stories as a comment!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012


Paper Tiger ShanghaiI've been so fixated on the dog and the house that i haven't managed to talk about artsy things in a long time....today i found this glorious paper store....

which makes me so jealous of cities where there are fancy papers....and letterpress stationary stores. (i got a fabulous handwritten card from my niece on some). Or beautiful fabrics. Or Crate and Barrel.

Monday, May 14, 2012

crazy go i if care don't i 5, 4, 3, 2, 1

did you ever sing that song when you were little? I don't care if i go crazy 1-2-3-4-5-6-switch....
anyways, i feel a little as though that is where we are at. Adam and i are taking this massive leap of faith that the house will be done with repairs this week and we can get in by Friday---seeing as we have less than 2 weeks to get out of the apartment, clean it and reclaim the deposit we already spent on rugs and:

What is that, you ask? Oh!, that's adam on the other side of the tree he decided we needed to have behind the new bed so that we can live in a forest. Seriously. We spent most of Saturday driving around Anchorage theoretically in search of a living room rug, but apparently in search of a "rug that looks like the forest floor" because "we are going to sleep in a forest." Oh boy. You'll understand when the pictures of before and after get posted--assuming there is a before and after. It ended in success after we realized Fred Meyer (my happy place) was having a 50% off area rug sale for Mother's Day---enabling us to get rugs for the whole house for the price we were planning to spend on just two. AH-MAY-ZING.

In the meantime, we had to get the tree back to the apartment--which basically looks like it threw up everything we ever owned into the living room. Neah is not impressed. We have cut down her 500 sq feet of lounge space to about 200 with all the clutter. And, she's afraid of the boxes when they are flattened on the floor and won't walk on them....so either she jumps or she whines because she got stuck somewhere in the box maze.

Dear Housing Goddess, PLEASE.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

hmmm...solutions not requiring cesar milan?

Yesterday at dog class Neah was riled up. She acted aggressively towards a Samoyed who was staring at her. Recognizing that clearly Adam and I are the problem--not because we are fearful or anxious but simply because she doesn't trust us as leaders--her new teacher took half an hour to show us various exercises we can do with her. Some will be easy to implement, some more challenging. A lot of them we have been trying to do for a long time without obvious success. It is hard to redouble your efforts when you feel thwarted.

The thing with Neah was that she was always anxious. She was skittish from the get go. We coddled her and weren't there for her when she got chased by a skier, didn't get her out enough with other dogs her first winter because of the car-sickness, etc. So, now, we are paying the price. Less affection, more discipline. Which of course is hard because she is really really lovable. We hear it will take three times as long to undo the damage we have managed to do in the last year. There are lots of hindsight things here---from not getting the excitable independent dog all the way through to not letting her off leash as a tiny puppy in the park. hindsight, sadly, is always 20-20.

For starters, we have to teach her that her name means good things...not the "Neah" which is accompanied by some yelling about why she's barking at passing bi-peds. We have to get her exercise where there is NO ONE around. She's not allowed on trails with others, etc. Ok. so where in Alaska in a 50 mile radius are we possibly going to locate a trail without people on it. Shoot me now. And how on earth are we meant to take her biking without seeing anyone---EVERYONE in this state plays outside in the summer.

Personally, I am hoping that the new house will be a fresh start. We can lay down clear ground rules from the start and that the change of venue, accompanied by a change of authority, can promote positive things. But laying out new rules starts tonight....so say a lil prayer for us.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Warning: semi-graphic pictures.

warning: Semi graphic photos below.

We've talked about it a few times. See here and here, But admittedly, i have been hiding from the interwebs the full extent of the issue. our cute, loving aussie is deathly afraid new situations and new people. she's been like this since we got her--but now that fear is complicated by protectiveness. i know i exaggerate a lot...but this isn't one of those times when embellishment is required for dramatic effect.

Yesterday was a beautiful, sunnyish day. Adam's softball team had a double header after work and he's been shouldering the neah exercise burden lately....so i decided to take her to the park to play frisbee. we pulled up and i saw this little 3 year old running around with a mostly inattentive mother. I tried driving to another park, but there were people playing baseball, so i decided that if i could just get far enough onto the frisbee area it would probably be okay.

Neah was so happy and excited. She loves frisbee. She loves to run. We were still on leash walking towards an open part of the field when she started growling. i turned around and saw the little three year old running towards us with it's mother and sister at distance watching. I started yelling, "no, go away, she's not friendly" frantically shaking my head, but the kid kept coming. The kid kept charging toward her with open arms and Neah became more frantic barking, growling and rearing up.

When the kid was finally about 2 feet from Neah, the supervisory units finally realized what was happening and sauntered our direction. Neah was fit to be tied--red zone kinda crazy--and what happened to be between her and this small idiot happened to be me. I felt her teeth sink in and knew it was going to be bad. She recoiled instantly--realizing she had gotten me by accident. I wrangled her between my legs and pulled her muzzle on--dripping blood onto my flipflopped feet and the ground. I yelled at the supervisory unit of the small idiot to get it away from her already. To which the sibling shrugged and the kid started screaming because he couldn't pet Neah.

I managed to get back to the car and find one of the 3 first aid kits i keep in it. i hadn't realized how challenging it is to open stuff with out thumbs. Once the bleeding was contained we went home and i went to the doctor. I finally had a full blown attack of the crying martha when i got in the car to go to the doctor's office and of course couldn't get a hold of adam.

There's something to be said about facebook knowing you are hurt before  your spouse does. I am not sure what it is though.

The poor little monster got three of her sharp teeths in my thumb. The most painful of which is the top one that went into the knuckle and the most infected of which appear this morning to be the bottom ones. My right thumb has swollen to three times the size of the left one and am praying the augmentin does it's magic.
I'm mad at that kid's mom for letting it run toward a barking snarling animal. i'm mad there isn't a single dog park in anchorage that is fenced---so there's no where i can take her that bikes don't ride through. and i am especially pissed off that my thumb got hurt before the big move. ----doing anything useful with it is VERY difficult.

The reality of the situation is that neah avoided me for the rest of the night....keeping her head down in shame when she saw me. I'm not mad at her. I'm mad at myself for putting her in a position where she didn't feel safe. She was still worried this morning that i didn't love her anymore. It breaks my heart. She's not a mean dog--she's scared and i don't know what to do to help that.

Friday, May 4, 2012

just when you think all's clear.

since the blog is now a chronicle of a first time home buyer's nightmares, why stop now. After making about a dozen calls this week to make sure that all repairs would be done by noon today so that we could do final wlk through with our home inspector ahead of tuesday's closing...i should have known we were in for trouble when adam and i drove up and found not one (the home inspector's) but five contractor trucks outside.

Luckily, Kevn (our guy) was already looking around--checking and double checking. There were a number of things that needed fixed.

Here's the comedy of error's list:
  1. The windows all needed to have the glass fixed/replaced. One window was done but there were three more to go. 
  2. The gutter guys had accidentaly put the new gutter on the wrong section of the roof. Kevin caught it and they were fixing it. 
  3. The sliding door opens again...but it is still sticky and i spent a while glaring at it. 
  4. Which leads us to the not so comic error. Kevin goes back into the crawl space to make sure all the stuff we found last time had been fixed only to discover the reason the door is all effed up is because there's a rotting joist under there. Believe me, i was feeling like we were in an episode of Holmes on holmes. UCK.
so, here we are with 4 days till "closing" 'rotting joists and me looking sad.
wishful thinking please.