Mar 6, 2011

Life just happens

It's been a bizarre few weeks here. Thankfully, nothing seriously bad has kept me from blogging - more of life getting in the way of things I love to do. You know how it is, I'm sure.

As I've mentioned previously, it took me two solid weeks to strip wallpaper from our soon (?) to be Den -- a small room allocated as a dining room by our builder, but realistically too small to be comfortable for people, table, hutch and chairs all at once. The dining room has long since been moved to what was originally called "the formal living room". There's not much that goes around here that you could call "formal" so that room made a far better dining room. Food we do well - formal, not so much.

A week after finishing the wallpaper stripping, I met with painters who will come in this week and "skim coat" the Den walls, then sand them down, skim coat again, then paint. A three day -- and apparently very dusty -- process. They arrive this Wednesday for skim coat number one. Cross your fingers that there isn't a need for skim coat number two, because the cost goes up dramatically.

Meanwhile, I'm told I need to now wash down all the walls to get rid of itty bitty microscopic bits of wallpaper and glue residue. My luck... perfectionist painters.

Meanwhile, for some very strange reason, Amazon contacted me about doing some work for them. I've been doing product and book reviews for them for about two years now, but this was a PAID offering - and with a March 4 deadline - which they later extended to March 13 without telling me. OK. The money is good, the job is OK, but the time.... the time is the thing.

I thought I had plenty of time to do everything - pick itty bits of wallpaper and glue off the walls and meet my deadline for Amazon.... and then. Life. Happened.

I had Mr. B. all day on Monday, as scheduled, but my daughter was sick with this nasty nasty stomach flu that's going around here. On Tuesday she was still sick, so I also tried to help her out by offering to get birthday cake and pick up school birthday snacks and delivery them... (It's tough enough to be a sick mom, but when you're a sick single mom? One of the hardest things in the world.) So I did what I could to help. Tuesday was Mr. B's fifth birthday, so we all went out to eat at his favorite restaurant (Big Boy's), then back to our house for presents and cake.

Not long after they left, I got sick with the same nasty stomach flu! No wall washing or Amazon job on Monday or Tuesday.

On Wednesday, in recovery mode, I slept late, answering the phone at 7am to find my daughter, on her way to work, saying that Mr. B was sick -- not with the stomach flu, but with a new round of respiratory infection. When she heard I was sick, she didn't ask me to take him (though I knew she wanted to). But luckily, I got up and got going and felt far better, and Mr. B. arrived at my house, sick as a dog, around 10am. Medicine taking, fluid forcing, breathing treatments, channel changing.... no work or wall washing on Wednesday.

Mr. B. is back on Thursday, but I do tell him that we're going to have to take turns - set the timer for 60 minutes and let me work, then set the timer for 60 minutes for play time - throughout the day so I can get some of my Amazon work done. He agreed and did very well, and kept himself busy through the first "work" timer.

Then the phone rings - my husband, at work, announcing HE has the stomach flu and he's leaving work to come home. I have to tell you, this is the first time in about a decade that my husband has taken a sick day with the exception of a kidney stone/emergency room day. So I knew he was s.i.c.k. Thursday is spent taking care of my guys - changing channels, fetching DVDs, making tea, pouring koolaid, giving medicine, fluffing pillows - and letting Joey the Killer Cat in and out because he decided he would spend that day on the wrong side of the door. One hour of work and no wall washing that day.

Friday - instant replay of Thursday except my husband didn't even raise his head off his pillow to attempt to go to work, and Mr. B. was feeling better (though not great) so had lots more energy. I needed to keep Mr. B. quiet so Jeff could sleep. We ran errands and then went to our local McDonald's because it has an indoor playground and indoor playgrounds are the perfect place on rainy days when Umpa needs to sleep.

No walls washed or work done on Friday.

Saturday should have been free and clear. No Mr. B.  Jeff was feeling better, though not great. I had won an online auction for what I thought was a great overstuffed and oversized living room chair for our soon-to-be den. I had borrowed my daughter's station wagon to go pick it up, and Jeff would ride along, help me get the chair in the car, and get back home and go back to bed. UNTIL it occurred to us how large this chair was. I measured the car. The chair was about four inches too large! I got online and looked at renting a small U-Haul - you know, those $19.95 a day local rentals? Well, it's not $19.95 a day - it's $19.95 plus .59 cents a mile and this chair was 30 miles away, tacking on an additional amount that was more than I paid for the chair itself! In desperation, I called my friend Lynn. Amazingly enough, she had won something at the same auction and was driving her VAN to pick up her own stuff! (That was the first time all week something actually went in my favor!).

We drove to the auction (it felt SO good to get out of the house!) and she got her (gorgeous) lamps and I went to view my chair....ugh ugh ugh. Although the photo looked good and the description said the chair was in very good shape - it wasn't. It was stained and the fabric was ripped and I was SO disappointed. I came home with no chair, after spending my entire morning and part of my afternoon working to go pick it up.

As soon as I got home, I had to head out again to another auction site that my husband had won - in a completely different direction from the first, of course. Again, it felt great to get out of the house, enjoy a nice ride to a favorite part of the area, so that was good. But still - no walls washed or work done on Saturday.

Today (Sunday) was menu planning, grocery list making, grocery shopping and - YES! - several hours of work accomplished finally.

But I still have walls to wash, I still have at least 12 more hours of work for Amazon, I have a color consultation for paint colors on Monday, painters coming on Wednesday ...

Why is it I can go for weeks at a time having no pressure of any kind, and life just flows along gracefully and as it should -- and when I have deadlines, everything around me crumbles?!

Now the pressure is on and the upcoming week will be juggling wall washing, glue removing, reading, writing and dodging painters. Of course, it will also include doing laundry, babysitting, cooking and cleaning up after said painters. It will be a wild week!

So if I'm not back blogging for a week, please understand! Life keeps happening at my house, and I truly wouldn't have it any other way.

But after the way last week went, what else could go wrong??


Karen said...

Oh my poor Joan! Isn't life sometimes such a mess? You're gonna have to just keep on running until things settle down. You know they will! I'm sure the guys in your life are very thankful for having such a wonderful, loving lady taking care of them!

Mom2fur said...

Ugh, wallpaper removal! It's really a chore, isn't it? But I'm sure the results will be worth it!

Martha said...

I've been behind looking at my favorite blogs. This week I am washing the walls before I paint which means getting rid of those specks of wallpaper left on the walls and the old paste. I take a diluted bottle of all purpose clean and spray it on the wall, lightly scrape a putty knife over and those specks come off. If you don't get them off, the paint won't adhere.

Then I simply take a bucket of warm water and without a damp cloth I wipe down the walls to clean off the residue.

It's a job and your shoulders, neck and arms sure get a work out.