Thursday, October 29, 2015

Spooky good fun

The day before yesterday, I killed a scorpion. By myself. With my jandal (flip flop) that was still on my foot. And I didn’t even scream! The Evil Overlord of Pain and Death was attempting to sneak up on us in the spa and attack us while we were relaxing and vulnerable. I discovered its plan after we got out and I was replacing the cover. It was all, “Oh damn! I almost had you! So close! Where are my minions?” And I was all, “Tell it to the bottom of my foot, asshole.”

This might sound like a small thing, but it turns out I’m ever so slightly phobic about the evil beasties. This was a huge thing for me.

It got me to thinking, though. Our son was stung once, Steve was stung twice, and I was stung thrice (oh yeah, rockin’ the thrice!) and all at 3am-ish in bed. Since moving in, I can count on one hand how many nights I have NOT been awake at 3-something in the morning. It’s kind of weird.

And ‘tis the season for freaky stuff, so I started thinking that in The Amityville Horror, George woke up every night at 3:15am because that’s when the murders happened! We’ve also had a lot of flies on the back porch. Coincidence?

Yeah, probably.

Anyway, not long after we moved in, one of our neighbors came over and talked to Steve. “See that tree over there?” he said at one point of the conversation, pointing to one of the mesquites on our property, “That’s where the previous owner is buried with his dog.” Ummm….what? “Yeah, he wanted to stay on his farm, so after she buried him she moved away,” referring to the wife.

A few weeks later, another neighbor came by and we happened to mention this little tidbit of information, and she said, “Nah, he ain’t buried there! She took him with her.” No mention about the dog.

So, now I’m left wondering if he died at 3-something in the morning and wanted to stay on the property, but she took his remains with her when he moved so now he’s a restless spirit?

Last night, like clockwork (literally), I was awake at 3-something in the morning. Got up, used the restroom, got back in bed, like usual. Normally I fall right back to sleep and all is good, but last night, despite being ridiculously tired, I just couldn’t seem to get back to sleep. Four a.m. came and I was still lying there wondering why I couldn’t get back to sleep.

And then the scream began.

Down the hallway, the most chilling scream started. I threw off the covers, about to run down the hall thinking it was my son. But then I realized what it was…

That damned water heater is going to be the death of me! Stupid thing is so burned out; we just hope it lasts a little bit longer until we can afford an on demand system.

If we do have a restless spirit in the house, at least he seems pretty mellow. Not like the last house we were at. That one has something very dark living there. Luckily, it seems to have stayed put. 

Monday, October 19, 2015

Pretending to be an adult

We've got furniture, y'all! Actual adult type furniture! Ahh... it's nice to really settle in.

John Travolta looks suitably impressed. 
Please excuse the weird wall coloring. We're still in the painting process.

It's an electric fire place! That fire is a figment of our collective imaginations! It's made of light and magic.

It's at night you can really see the magic.

Of course, this photos are two weeks old (I know, but things happen), so the mantle is now looking much more deadly and haunted. Halloween is pretty big in our house.

More big news, though, we've destroyed another arch in the front and put in the new post. It was a busy weekend!

Steve, cutting through the metal mesh on the ceiling. 

More cutting. 
I'm a little addicted to the sparks. 

See that look on Steve's face in the last photo? That's because he really should have had his sleeves down for this process. He kept most of the hair on his arms.

I don't have a photo yet of the porch after this weekend. It was long and tiring, and after hitting the house with a hammer for a few hours, I didn't have the strength to lift the camera. Even lifting my wine glass was a challenge. Don't worry, though, I managed.

And look!
Little Yellow Mixer
Steve's currently out picking up cement. Soon, the sounds of concrete mixing will fill the farm, followed by the sound of pouring the floor in the new chicken coop. They are going to be the most spoiled chickens of all time!

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Just a quick one

I don't have a lot of time because it's late and I need to start on dinner, but this is important enough to say and I have a platform. So there.

This morning, as I was perusing Facebook, I came across a little comic of two... I dunno, cats? Anyway, one was holding a jar that said "Happiness." The other one said, "Where did you get that? I've been looking for it everywhere!" And the one holding the jar replies, "I made it myself."

A few weeks ago there was another meme that said something along the lines of "If you don't have anything positive to say, then stay silent. We're all tired of your shit."

Now, as someone who suffers quite literally from depression and anxiety, those types of statuses feel like an attack. Sometimes I don't have anything positive to say. Why? Because pretending to be happy takes energy and sometimes I'm using all of my energy to not harm myself.

Yeah, go back and read that last sentence again.

And I've tried to make my own happiness, but that's really hard when you feel each failure as a physical blow. It doesn't even have to be a big failure, or even a "failure" by most people's standards.

True story: a few weeks ago, Steve and I went to an art do in town. While we were there and rubbing elbows with the locals, Steve let out that I'm a trained, and fairly talented if I do say so myself, barista (that's someone who makes coffee). Well! That was just the most amazing thing ever, because, according to this particular group, the local cafe was in serious need of talented help. And it just so happened that they meet there every morning and talk and whatnot, and I should come on Monday and talk and make coffee because that would be awesome. That was a Saturday, so I had all day Sunday to stress about it and overthink EVERYTHING. And believe me, I did. I didn't actually sleep very well Sunday because I was so freaked out about the entire thing. In fact, Monday morning, I almost didn't go. But I did. I spent the last bit of my energy dragging my butt out of the house and into town. Then I sat in my car in front of the cafe mentally admonishing myself for being a complete losery mess. Somehow, I don't know how, I managed to drag myself out of the car and into the cafe with a smile on my face ready to play nice. Except there was no one there. And the people behind the counter were not the ones from Saturday. I went to the counter and ordered a Chai Latte, and mentioned that the people on Saturday had told me to come in since I was a barista, an artist, and new to the area. "Oh, that's cool," the girl said, thoroughly uninterested. No, they're not looking for help. No idea when they meet there, or even if. This, to me, counts as yet another failure.

So, if you're a positive person and things just always seem to go your way, that's great. Honestly, I would never take that away from you. Please try to understand, though, that I kind of hate you for it. I'm pretty sure that the "everything always goes my way" people are taking all the luck meaning that people like me are constantly getting shit on through no fault of our own. We work hard, harder than most, because it never goes our way and we think we just didn't do enough or the right thing and we need to do more so it doesn't happen again. But then it does happen again, and it doesn't make any sense. It takes a lot of energy to keep trying harder, but never getting anywhere. Just keep that in mind the next time you post something about being positive or shutting up.  

Friday, October 16, 2015

We have the geekiest discussions

Steve and I have a routine of getting into the spa at the end of the day prior to making dinner. Often, we have a drink (not always alcoholic) while relaxing.

Just thought I’d set the scene for our conversation.

Steve: Are you pouring a libation?

Me: Yep. Although it won’t really be a libation, I was going to have the pumpkin pie soda today.

Steve: Ok. But that’s still a libation.

Me: Really? I thought “libation” suggested alcohol. You know, referring to the liberating effects.

Steve: No, I don’t think so. I think it can refer to any refreshing drink.

Me: Huh. We’re geeks.

Steve: Yep!

And just for clarity’s sake: (According to
Libation- noun
1.       A pouring out of wine or other liquid in honor of a deity.
2.       The liquid poured out.
3.       Often facetious
a.       An intoxicating beverage; as wine, especially when drunk in ceremonial or celebrative situations.
b.      An act or instance of drinking such a beverage.

So, I guess we were both right? But mostly me.

P.S. Proof! 
Although I don't really recommend it. It was a bit sweet for my taste, not enough spice. My son liked it, though. He said it tasted like pavlova. Steve and I agree, however, that it tastes nothing like pavlova. So if you do buy a bottle, please don't judge pavlova based on this. 

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

This is why I don't do drugs

Today I had to go to the dentist to get a filling. That in itself is pretty boring, I’ll admit, but the issue for me is that they can’t use lidocaine. If you’re unfamiliar with numbing agents, lidocaine is one of the most common currently used because the chances of having a negative reaction to it is, I was told, one in a million. So, I could make myself a t-shirt that says “One in a million!” and it would be true! And then I could sell the t-shirts! According to google, as of 2014 there were 318.9 million people in America. If I made $5 off every t-shirt (one in a million since everyone with a lidocaine allergy will obviously want one) that’s $1,594!

Hmmm….that’s not actually very much. But if everyone in the world bought one… Google says there are 7.3 billion people in the world. That’s a lot! Of course, not everyone has internet, or medical care, or money.

Ah, fuck it, I’m doing it anyway! 

One in a million tshirts
Join your tribe of freakish lidocaine intolerant people!

Yes, I created a Zazzle Store. (It's a bit sparse at the moment, I'll work on that little by little.) But someone already used the name “Whanau Farm” so I had to use my other company name “Batty4Arts.” Which could actually work out well since I can put some of our arty stuff on stuff and sell it to fund my craziness.

I completely forgot what I was talking about.

Oh, right! The dentist!

So two weeks ago, I had to get a couple of monster fillings, which meant that we all got to see what my reaction to a different type of “caine”, I think it’s cetacaine. Anyway! Good news! I didn’t have a reaction!

In case you’re wondering why I keep using “reaction” instead of “allergy” it’s because technically I’m not allergic to lidocaine. I had to go to an asshole allergist who told me a charming story when he noticed my belly ring. It went like this: “I knew a girl once who got her belly button pierced, and then she died.” Cool story, bro, tell it again! Anyway, he got all bitchy at me because I didn’t react in the office during the test. It was several hours later when my arm swelled up so much I couldn’t move it, and it was covered in a painful red rash. He claimed it was not an allergic reaction, but rather a delayed hypersensitive reaction. Whatever. All I care about is that it’s not used on me, especially in dental procedures. You know, around my wind pipe!

But cetacaine seems to be fine. So, this morning she pumped me full of the stuff. My teeth went all numb. Then my lips. Then my nose. Then my eye! The entire right hand side of my face was dead! Luckily, it was a small filling, so it didn’t take very long. When I sat up and tried talking, though, it was rather hilarious. I couldn’t move the right hand side of my face, which makes certain sounds difficult.

After the dentist, I had to go to the grocery store to pick up a few things. I checked myself out in the mirror before I went in because my face felt puffy and drooly and twitchy and sluggish. It was twitchy and sluggish, only a little drooly, though, and not really puffy so that was good. I went into the store, however, grateful that my foot wasn’t hurting because if I was puffy (it still felt puffy) and drooly and twitchy and sluggish AND limping I would be just a little too Quasimodo. I probably would not resist the urge to climb the nearest bell tower and scream “SANCTUARY!” at the top of my lungs. I don’t think it would’ve ended in Mai Tai’s and coconut oil, if you know what I mean.

This is why I don’t do drugs. Even numbing agents make me feel queasy and headachy. Not that I have any idea if that’s how drugs make you feel since the closest I’ve ever come is taking a single puff of a tobacco cigarette when I was 19. I decided it was gross and not for me. Of course, lots of people think alcohol is a drug. In that case, yeah. Scotch and wine are my nighttime buddies.

I don’t really have a point to all this. Basically, I went into HEB, and got some things (including Pumpkin Pie soda because I’m one of those seriously annoying people who actually enjoys everything is flavored like pumpkin spice season), but they didn’t have everything I needed, so I had to go to Wal-Mart, still numb, and got other stuff (including some pumpkin spice scented wax melts because, you know), and then I had to drive all the way to the post office to pick up two packages- the one that I wanted to pick up yesterday and another that came today so it all worked out in the end.

Today is pretty special, though. It’s the 9th anniversary of mine and Steve’s first date! Proof that Friday the 13th can be lucky. Yes, I know today is Tuesday, but our first date was on Friday and it was on the 13th of October, try to keep up, sweetness. So tonight is roast chicken and bubbly.  And maybe coconut oil if I can convince Steve that a back rub is the traditional 9th anniversary of a first date gift.  

Monday, October 12, 2015

Happy Rape-Pillage-and- Murder-a-Native-but-Not-Too-Happy-Because-All-The-Plebs-Still-Have-to-Go-to-Work Day


Just, ugh.

Apparently I’m not really cut out for small town life. Don’t get me wrong, despite all the scorpions, wasps, invading crickets, crazy neighbors, and driving for hours to get to absolutely anywhere, I do like living out in the middle of nowhere. It’s quiet here. We don’t have constant road noise (including a fire truck every 15 minutes) like we did in Temecula. We don’t have the constant hum of neighboring air conditioners year round and zero privacy that we did in Leander. It’s nice. I just wish our local little town wasn’t steeped in… honestly, I don’t know if it is the town or just me. I’m apparently not cut out for whatever it is, though.

I can’t deal with big cities because they’re too loud and crowded and big crowds make me screamy and stabby.

I really don’t like the suburbs because having people live that close to me feels crowded and it always turns into a Stepford Wives nightmare and that makes me screamy and stabby.

As it turns out, I can’t deal with small town slowness, everyone knows everyone so they don’t take the time to introduce anyone and directions are by way of Jim’s. You know Jim! Everyone knows Jim. You don’t know Jim? Oh, well, heck. Anyway, turn left at Jim’s place, but not his current one, the one he lived in before. <Sigh>

I’m a woman without a country. Apparently, I’m just not cut out for human interaction.
One of the things about living out here in the middle of nowhere that is rather irritating is the postal service. And I know, the postal service is always irritating, but our local takes it to a whole new level. Since we’re on the “rural” delivery, anytime we get anything delivered that’s bigger than a postage stamp, we have to go into town to collect it. So Friday we get one of those all too familiar orange pick up cards. It says we can pick up our item on Saturday between 10am and 12pm. Well, thanks for the ultimate convenient hours! Unfortunately, we already had plans and couldn’t get there, even with that huge window of opportunity. And of course, they’re closed on Sunday.

No biggie, I had to go into town to deal with prescriptions that got messed up, too (but that’s a different rant). So I stopped by the post office. No one there, it’s all locked up. No sign about why or when they’d be open. I stood there for a moment wondering if I should hang out for a few minutes or just go. I decided to just go. It wasn’t until I was about halfway home that I realized today is Rape, Pillage, and Murder a Native Day! Some people call it Columbus Day, but I think that’s a misnomer. I mean, why would we celebrate an asshole Italian working for Spaniards who never set foot on US soil?  And it’s understandable that I would forget that it’s a Federal Holiday since all us plebs are still expected to work. Heck, I haven’t even seen a single Rape, Pillage, and Murder a Native Sale this year. I guess it wasn’t selling mattresses as effectively as it had in the past.

Ugh. But this means I have to go back into town tomorrow. I don’t want to go back into town tomorrow! Nobody seems to understand the concept of a car, and driving, and not being annoying. Actually, even worse, I have to go into Fredericksburg as well since our super market doesn’t have most of the things I need. Every time I drive through Fredericksburg, I almost die because people are just the worst and that makes me very screamy and stabby.

So on this festive Rape, Pillage, and Murder a Native Day, be a bad pleb and take the afternoon off. And when you’re out driving, use your signals, check your blindspot, and do the speed limit. And remember, if you can’t do the speed limit because driving faster than a butterfly on downers is too scary, safely pull to the side of the road and allow other vehicles to pass. It will make for a significantly less screamy stabby world. 

Monday, October 5, 2015

Let it begin!

We've got the first two posts up on the front porch! We have a long way to go, but now we're sure it's totally worth it!

Destruction, the mother of all construction?
It was starting to look hopeless.

Just eeww!
The rot we're finding is not only disgusting, it's a little disheartening. Not really sure why we spent so much money for an inspection before buying this place when it misses stuff like this!

The beam!
It took all three of us to get that beam up and braced. It wasn't easy, and I was fairly certain about three times I was about to die as the ladder wobbled. But we did it!
Watch out! I'm armed!
I've never really used power tools before. They're a bit intimidating! But I used the skill saw...

Chip chip chip.
...and chipped away! Steve did most of the work, but at least I'm helping.
Woo hoo!
Finally! We could see some real progress!
Put your feet up and stay awhile. 
Time for some rest...
Bubbly to mark the occasion.
...and celebration!

It's made a huge difference to the house. Not only getting rid of the areas the bugs love to invade, and the rot, it's seriously lightened up inside the house and revealed the spectacular view! I have to admit, it's a bit of a relief that the results are so enormous. It's a big, difficult job; at times it feels impossible. So it really helps that it's worth all the hard work!

Friday, October 2, 2015

The house that keeps on giving

A few months ago, my son came us with a lot of little red bumps that we initially thought were some sort of bug bites. Steve and I were not getting bitten, though, and when we checked in his room, we couldn't find anything. We thought maybe they were fleas, since we knew we had had them in our room, and they're pretty hard little buggers to spot, so we set off a flea bomb in his room. This led to a stressful afternoon, because, unknown to us, the silly cat had sneaked into his room before we set off the fogger. She was ok. But the red bumps did not go away. In fact, they got worse.

I made an appointment with the doctor who made his diagnosis: rash. He prescribed steroids, said to call back if it didn't clear up, and sent us on our way. I kind of miss when doctors would offer a lolly pop to good patients, but oh well.

The steroids weren't working. I was almost to the point of calling and scheduling another exam because the rash wasn't going away!

This morning, at some unholy hour of before sunrise, because my son is a morning person, oh yay, he comes in our room saying something about bugs. My son is a morning person, we are not. It was a while before I was awake enough to actually look at his bed. And oh sweet mother, no.

Cue the dramatic music, dim the lights, the squeamish should exit the building: bed bugs. A huge infestation of bed bugs. Hundreds of the freaking things!

Steve set to work bagging up everything, and vacuuming. I had a dentist appointment. (Two huge fillings and I go back week after next for the third. I hurt a bit at the moment. Be sure to take good care of your teeth, kids!)

On my way home from the dentist I stopped by Wal-Mart and got battle ready: mattress cover, box spring cover, new pillow, bed bug spray... I wanted to get some sticky traps that you put at the corner of the bed to stop them from spreading and to be able to gauge if they've gone away. I wanted to put some of them all over the house to make sure they haven't infiltrated the rest of the house, but the store didn't have any. I might wind up going into town sometime to one of the bigger home stores and hopefully find some.

I am a little glad that we found them and can start treating them. My son was really starting to drive me crazy talking about the bumps: "Maybe we could get my DNA tested to see if that's why I have them." Honestly, there are times I have no idea what is going through that head of his. DNA?

At the same time, I'm very disturbed that the doctor didn't catch it. Looking at photos online of what bed bug bites look like, it's pretty obvious that's what this is. This is just further proof that you're so much better off taking charge of your health rather than trusting doctors.