i guess this is the plan. for now.

It's time to start remodeling. We've caught the bug. We're emotionally ready.
Let the games begin.

This is going to get pretty extensive and pretty graphic over the next few months. Some pretty hard core DIY is about to go down. Don't worry we're all consenting adults around here. But you've been warned.

First up, the master bathroom.


Hello lover.

It's the 1990s special. Oak cabinets, tile counter tops, and that light fixture. Who came up with that fixture? Must have made a mint because every un-remodeled house has it (and hates it). I'm basing the entire remodel around it's removal. Ok that's not entirely true, but my hatred for it makes it feel true.

Today, it's just a plan.
Here's the plan (I made myself a little mood board):

We're keeping the counter tops. I've actually grown attached to the lavender tiles -- I love them, they're unique, and I live with them, so I really don't care what you think. I'm sorry. I didn't mean that. I'm just overprotective of my babies.

We are going to paint the cabinets. Why? Couple of reasons.
1. I like gray cabinets. Call me crazy. I think they're soft. Apparently, I think gray is soft. But then again, most of my wardrobe is gray so I'm a bit biased. I'm also going on "gray restriction" after this.

2. We don't want to change the cabinets - they're in great condition. No sense running up the cost when you have something perfectly good just lying around.

3. The plan is to eventually (project number 2) paint the kitchen cabinets white. This is the test run. As in, can we paint cabinets or will we be forced to buy new (I will literally have a miser-fit if that happens and heads will roll).

I'm planning on adding a frame to the flat sheet mirror. We'll change the faucets, the light fixture, and add some decor to spiff up the space.

Tonight, we begin the buying.
Stripping agents. Sand paper. Knobs. Primer. The basics.
The biggest point of contention right now is which shade of gray. Lighter or darker?

Thoughts? Comments? Anyone have an opinion they need heard about my bathroom? I might not like it, but I'll at least consider it with a somewhat open mind.

So, that's the plan.

it just plain sucks.

Welcome to my pity party. So glad you came.
I don't think you meant to RSVP, but you're on my blog which means you chose to come. I want to feel bad, it's just... I don't.

I am at home.
I'm watching episode 9 million of Say Yes to the Dress, and wondering how I got here.

I actually know how I got here, I'm being dramatic because I'm a middle child and I'm bored. That's what middle kids do when we're bored. We seek attention. Ok, ok, that might not be true for all middle kids, but it is for this girl.

I'm not supposed to be at home. Chuck and I are supposed to be in Hawaii. I'm supposed to be in an orange sun dress with strappy sandals, a frozen beverage, and a sun burn.

This is an artists rendition of how Chuck and I should look right now.
(Chuck's a little modest about his chestle region, hence the bikini top. He's so old fashioned.)

But this is not how we are. I've been sick since March 12.
I've made you a graph of my illness for maximum effect (you. are. welcome).

I ended up with the flu, then a sinus infection, the flu again (why not?), and the sinus infection decided to stick around and become truly memorable. I finally went to the doctor last Thursday and she was pretty blunt. I'd been sick for almost 2 weeks by then, and I would have at least 3 more days of bad bad and then another week of just normal sick. Oh goody. She prescribed heavy duty nasal spray, 8 Sudafed, 8 Dayquils, and 2000mg of antibiotics each day. I'm popping pills like an 85 woman.

This meant flying with a sinus infection and being sick in Hawaii.
Chuck said No. That wasn't how this vacation was going down. So he cancelled it.

It pretty much sucks.
I'm doing better now (I even had an outing this morning!!), I'm just disappointed. I missed most of March, a week and a half of school, and now my Spring Break vacation. It could be worse. It definitely could be worse.

Chuck and I do have grand plans for this week.
We've decided to create our own Hawaiian vacation in Seattle, in late March. I already started by applying a healthy amount of self tanner this morning and am wearing a tank top (with a cardigan...) and open toed shoes (I'm living on the edge).

a little something about best friends.

Don't you just love best friends?

I do. Who doesn't?

I'm blessed with four best friends. Why four? Well, I'm greedy like that (and needy). And even if I had to, I couldn't pick just one; they're all my world.


I won't comment on when this picture was taken or why, but it's so totally us. What we wouldn't do for each other. That includes (apparently) wearing jean skirts and uggs. Long story

Bottom line, best friends make life better. They can make it easier. They can make it happier. They can make it feel more survivable.

Lucy has a best friend.

His name is Coat. He's a 9 month sized lavender winter jacket and she's wearing every bit of him out. Coat goes everywhere that we all go. He goes to Child Prison each morning (along with, I might point out, Lucy's current wear-able coat). He goes to the Mall with us, the store, and of course, the Beiber movie. "Ma, Coat want to meet Beiber."

Leaving Coat behind is a punishable offense.



Sometimes, she thinks it's funny to try and wear Coat again like the good ol' days. Basically reenacting Chris Farley's "Fat guy in a little coat". She's a riot.


When something goes especially good and she wants to show appreciation, she gifts Coat. Chuck was gifted Coat when he gave Lucy her ruby red slippers.

Most of the time, Coat just goes where Lucy goes and does the "everyday" thing. The little things that make a friend truly great.


Helping to make decisions.


Lending support during trying times.


Being there to face the world.


Providing protection from the paparazzi.



Being someone to lean into when the going gets rough.

Today, a special someone was gifted Coat. Must have done something really special.


I'm going to have to disagree with Lu. I do not think "Betty like dis" as Lucy insisted. But then again, Coat is pretty magical and Betty should feel blessed.

It's not everyday a person lends you their best friend.
(I wouldn't. But I'm selfish.)

general rule of thumb.


Forts kick butt.

On an aside, Fe recently decided it was time to rid herself of the encyclopedias she and PK bought for us kids back in The Day. I don't know what tipped her off that it was time, persmaps it was the mention of East Germany or the failure to mention the Interweb. OR (as I'm reasonably sure) the fact that Gutenberg himself printed that set.

Either way, she was looking to unload them and per her Motherly duty (section 4B of Mom bi-laws), she had to ask if Shelley or I wanted them before tossing the load. Due to our penchant for wikipedia, et al, we decided they were of no use anymore.

Wrong.

Shelley called me in an absolute panic post our decision. 
"Forts."
Dang.  Nothing anchors a good fort like A thru L on one side and M thru Z on the other. How did we forget that those encyclopedias were used more for fort making than research? I honestly don't know how Shelley and I would have gotten through childhood without them and now I'm a little worried about Lu.

What is she supposed to use in her epic fort building?
We have failed her.

it's about dang time.


Thank God.
It's officially Spring. Winter, as always, over stayed his welcome and can kindly find somewhere to go and die. I don't care if it rains all week. I don't care if it's still 45 degrees outside.

It's technically Spring and I'm technically fine with that.
I'm retiring wool, cable knit, and turtle necks, and I'm also going on black restriction. Why? Because it's Spring. Thank God. It's finally Spring.

and they let him fly airplanes.

I'm thinking maybe a perfect 800 on the verbal section of his SATs was a fluke. Same with graduating summa cum laude and in the top 1% of our college class.

Because really, he's not that smart.

He came home from work the other day a little out of breath and really, the walk from our drive way to front door is not much. I know he's skin and bones, but I kind of expect him to still be able to walk 10 feet without looking windblown.

Turns out Mr. Genius played the "gas game" and lost.
You know the Gas Game. As in, how long can you go with your gas light on before giving in and getting gas OR running out. The light came on when he was running errands for me, but he decided to play Kramer and see how far below the line he could go. This meant driving his hour commute to work in rush hour, and, well, he didn't quite make it home.


That's his VW at the end of our street.
Our house is about 5 doors down.
So. Close.

I wee'd myself with happiness when he came home and told me. Responsible Chuck had run out of gas. Hallelujah. I think (no, I know) this is the only day in our marriage where I wasn't the least mature person. It was a March Miracle.

Truth be told, Chuck plays the Gas Game all the time and it drives me crazy. I hate it. This was such a win for me, I had to gloat. I did the obligatory "I told you so" and the ever popular "I hope you've learned a lesson."

He said he did.
He said "Next time, I'll coast more. Imagine how much farther I could have gone."

of course i own a onesie.

It's been a week.

I didn't work a single day. Well, except today, but that doesn't count because it was a "no kid day". I've been home sick since last Saturday and this one, dang. It was a doozy. I'm still Sniffles McPity-Party, but at least I'm back on solid food.

But even in my sickness, I still wanted my time with Lucy.
I reasoned that I wasn't contagious and I was home anyways, so I wanted to spend time with my favorite Beiber fan. It was my silver lining to a crappy week.

We cuddled yesterday on the couch together. We watched The Princess and The Frog and snuggled. And she was absolutely the best friend to sit with.

"Poor Sister. Your nose is so sad."
"It will be OK, Sister."
"Here Sister, I get your boogers". It was a nice offer. I passed. Call me crazy. Or Ishmael.

At some point during our day, Lucy suggested getting on our "Jammies".
Chuck came home at the perfect time to take our picture.


Aren't we quite a pair?


And in case you were curious:
1. Yes, those are my adult sized footy pajamas.
2. Yes, I own adult sized footy pajamas.
3. No, they aren't actually adult sized. They're a kids XL from Target and it's taken me 4 years to stretch them long enough. Win.


FTR: This is my favorite picture of us ever. Bar none. This is tops. Even though I look like a week of being sick and am in my pajamas. She still loves me and is literally squeezing the life out of me.

it's all about the leprechauns baby.

I decided that since we have Lucy for St. Patrick's Day, we were going all out leprechaun.

I started my plan yesterday. We talked about leprechauns. We looked at leprechaun stuff at Target (please pronounce as Tar-jay...that's how it was in my head and I want this to be accurate. Muah.).  We even bought a leprechaun shirt to make certain we wouldn't get pinched.

This morning.


The leprechaun came.
Obviously he made a mess of our kitchen.
There was gold from our backyard to inside.

And yes, he left a present -- why wouldn't he? This leprechaun happens to really enjoy when Lucy visits and really enjoys buying her gifts and has a lot of impulse control issues in the Target dollar section.


PS. I told Jack this was not Sinter Klaas day and we didn't need a Black Pete (in this case, Black Jack), but he wasn't having any of it. Do your Dutch homework if you don't get this reference. It's a pretty good joke, but really, if you don't get it that's find, just culture yourself via wikipedia. It was probably edited correctly.

Lucy was so happy about the leprechaun. She coo'd. She screamed.


"THE LEPER CAME!!!!" 
Yes. A little green man with a flesh eating bacteria came from his Irish Leper Colony for a little St. Patrick's Day celebration, old testament style.

I guess next year I'll leave some ointment for him?
T.B.D.

she's getting stupid good at this.

I would say, pretty much without hesitation, that I am good at cooking, but the anti-good at baking.

Baking is an art. That's what Fe always said. I do not "get" this art. I would like to, but you can't really teach a 28 year old dog new trick. (number 1: yes, I just called myself a dog - whatever, it was necessary for the sentence; B. I just don't care.)

I think we can all remember very vividly what happened the last time I tried to bake a cake.


In it's defense, it tasted a heckuva lot better than it looked.
In my defense, I wasn't really "trying" very hard. Maybe effort is my missing ingredient. OR maybe I'm just not meant to bake.

And for the record, Chuck did eat most of this monstrosity before the mold set in (whatever judgy wudgy).

Let's play a comparison game. I can't bake a cake, but here's someone that can.


Dania.

I have proof (don't worry - I felt you panic). I decided Dania needed to be showcased today, because, well, she's getting stupid good at making these cakes.


This was The Twilight Cake for Emy. It was one of the first cakes Dania made fancy. But by making this cake, she kinda set the bar pretty high and well, that's her fault. Now we want a fancy one at every occasion.


Last year, I got a camera cake to commemorate how annoying I am.
The strap is made out of Fruit by the Foot and I believe the lens was a ding dong.


Jessica got a Popcorn Cake.
The stripes are red Fruit Roll Up. I can't remember what the butter is. Maybe yellow Starburst. Maybe yellow frosting.


This is what I got this year.
It's a coffin on "grass". The dirt is Oreos and the grass is dyed green coconut.

And my new favorite:


It's a "TV dinner".
There's corn on the cob, chicken legs, mashed potatoes, peas and carrots, and dessert.

Pretty. Darn. Ridiculous.
(she should probably go into business, huh?)

twenty eight.

Well, I'm officially 28.

Sound the funeral march. Really, any march would be awesome at this point since I haven't done much of anything since Saturday morning. That's when I got a fever, skipped my birthday party, turned it into the stomach flu on my actual birthday (because why not?), and now have bed sores from not moving in 72 hours.

Apparently, it was my party and I could cry  vomit if I want to. Big brudder Eric did have an interesting point that Charlie Sheen and I now have quite a bit in common. Both spending our 28th birthdays face down in a toilet, so I guess you could say that's a win (and you're all trolls, ps).

I kid.

I don't know, I've just been pretty depressed about this birthday and maybe starting it with the flu was a major self-fulfilling prophecy. Something about being 28 really weighed on me. 27 I was fine with; 28, not so much.

I can't pinpoint what it is that has me so down, but I have been. I'm trying to turn over a new leaf, but this leaf feels awfully heavy. Luckily, I have friends and family to help me lift. Emy sent me my favorite birthday card this year (no offense to all other card senders). She said "You are only getting more fabulous each year."

I love that (and I love her).
I'm getting more fabulous. That's the focus. I'm literally aging like a fine wine or trying to at least.

So that's where I'm at. Heading into 28 and trying to do it with some semblance of grace.
Wish me luck.

this is the look i've been going for.


This pretty much sums me up right now.
At least when she feels like this, it's cute. My version is far more whiny, strained, and not nearly as adorable. Trust me, I've looked in the mirror.

She is, however, absolutely ridiculous.

my mom is pretty obscene.

Fe is a complicated woman.
I didn't mean that.
She isn't complicated at all.

Fe is the kind of woman that thinks this is appropriate for a "birthday lunch."

Full of class (mostly lower).
They're called Chicken on a Throne.
Their throne, I'm sorry to say, is Budweiser. They are schmered in a chili rub and then seated with love on a can of beer, which in two hours of cooking flavors them from, um (cough) the, uh, inside out.

They are obscene looking and they make my mother giggle. They make everyone giggle. This time 'round, Fe decided it would make them less obscene if they were sword fighting. Yes, because a fencing match somehow makes this better. It's a dignified sport. But I don't think it's helping.

She told me this whole set up, her chickens, their fencing, was "blog appropriate".
I said, no way.
Obviously, she won. Something about labor and 28 years ago came up. I think she's dramatic.

I told her I thought the chickens were a little too vulgar for "The Blog".

So I dressed them.

Isn't that better?
I gave pink bikini a belly button ring. She seemed like the kind of girl that would have a belly button ring. Not that I was ever one of those girls. (What? Don't judge. I went to college in 2001. Try not getting a belly button piercing in 2001 whilst living in a dorm. That's like getting through '85 without a perm. Not. Gonna. Happen).

Then I decided the girls really shouldn't be in a 9x13 on my parent's counter.
They didn't belong there.
They deserve more.

That's better.

See? So much better.
My mother and her obscene little birds. Nothing that tastes that good can really be that offensive, can it?
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