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Thursday, November 3, 2005

hai yah freakin' hah.

ai yai yai. all that and a bag of chips.

god dayum, it's been a tough couple of weeks! lots of good, but also much unsettled, and downright catastrophes.

*exceptionally deep breath*

life is good. life is good. life is good.

(right now, i'm chanelling Nina Simone, courtesy of a kickass CD my sis made for me.

Oooo, child, things are gonna get easier...
Oooo, child, things'll get brighter...
Oooo, child, things are gonna get easier...
Oooo, child, things'll get brighter...
Someday, we'll get it together and we'll get it undone;
Someday, when the world is much brighter.
Someday, we'll walk in the rays of a beautiful sun -
Someday, when the world is much lighter!

it's been really hard to see how good things are these days. and i could spend volumes explaining the last few weeks, but that's only any good for me, beating myself over the head for several mistakes.

here's the short (!) version:

V3r!z@n call a few weeks back, which resulted in a full day for a Vtech. ultimately, we got our phone jacks and the lines repaired, and are happy with the service. but... yewfah.

and then our tenants moved in. tenants! whee! yee hah! i love them - they are great, and friendly, and love the place, and want to make it their own, and have the Best Dog Ever. all good - we like them, they like us, Life Is Good.

but the complication is this: we told them the place was in move-in condition. and to my uneducated eye, it was. yes, there are always things to work out when you move in. but is was so much more than that.

in short procession, we had in The Heater Guy, The Gas Guy, The Plumber, and The Heater Guy, Redux. gah.

so. the tenants before (and i'm more than happy to spill their names if you want to check out a prospective tenant) skipped on all their utility bills, ran down the place, screwed up the washer/dryer unit, hosed the boiler, and fucked up the gas/water heater. ... ah, i hated them before, but now i really have it out for them.

fortunately, our current tenants are very patient. we got the washer/dryer fixed before they moved in (redid the pipes, thank you hubby!), i cleaned the place and replastered, our heater guy fixed the boiler so they had heat, and the water heater... oh, you so don't want to know the details, but suffice it to say, they were able to shower and cook a scant 4 days after they moved in. gawd, i feel like such a bad landlord!!

on the other hand, i really love how patient our tenants have been, and how much time/energy they have put into making the place theirs. it looks wonderful - and only sort of joking, i asked one of them if they'd like to redecorate our place, as it's currently done in Early Childhood. :)

*sigh* the plumber... ah, yeah, the plumber.

(sidenote: i am so happy to have a plumber, an electrician, a heater person, a pest control company, and a tree guy at my disposal. it makes all the difference to have people that you can call at the drop of a hat. i also got a great recommendation on a mason tonight. whee ha!)

so...*sigh* we called because of a few minor drips that sounded to me like my water bill going down the drain. and then All Hell Broke Loose. hubby was showering on the third floor, and i heard running water on the second. once i determined that i hadn't left a faucet on, i figured out that water was running thru *the light fixture in the guest room* - the path of least resistance for the water, and the path of most hazard for my hubby.

god almighty... when our kickass plumber came over the day after i called, he went up to assess the situation. and when he pushed on the tiles *they fell thru the nonexistent wall*.

thru. the. wall. that. didn't. exist.

that's right, folks: the last person to do a repair didn't put a backing board behind the tiles. so, pretty much, we've been sending shower water thru the structure of the house for *months*.

oh, how very much that sucks.

i couldn't even walk into the bathroom to see what was going on when the plumber first tore things apart. instead, i decided to go shopping for supplies. i went to Targe, Pet Supplies, Home Despot, and Costco. the most entertaining part of the trip (for others, not me) was me trying to fit the 6' sheet of Wonderboard into my 5' wide car. after i swore loudly and vehemently in the parking lot (i'd tried for 20 minutes, let it be noted), one of the guys helped me out, and broke many laws of physics, for which i was very grateful.

and then when i got back, i decided to look. the project wasn't any worse, but i knew that our plumber had done a yeoman's job, and if i went to look, it would be at least a known quantity. and It Was Good. pipes were clean, sodders were neat, structures were pleasing. and i had hauled home all the supplies hubby needs to close in the wall next week.

so. positive: our tenants have heat. they have hot water, and a working stove. they'll have a great heater lamp in their bathroom next week. they don't seem to hate us at the moment. we have two silent (!) bathrooms, where i no longer hear our water bill sprinting down the drain. our mortgage is up to date, our bills are good, and i've worked out things with Town Hall re: property tax.

and in the spirit of Appreciating The Good: Little Man is doing excellently well in school. he earned his blue belt in Kenpo karate last weekend. he doesn't fuss much with us (given that he's 7, there's a certain amount to be expected). we had a fantastic Halloween with him, for the first time in 3 years - as did his mum, so it was good all around. LM ate as much candy as he could on Halloween, and didn't get sick. not only didn't get sick, but went to bed on time. !! (thankful i didn't have to peel him off the ceiling) my friends and family are happy and healthy. i have an interview tomorrow, and hubby has been landing gigs left and right.


when it rains, it pours.

and don't even ask me about the water flow in our basement - it approximates Niagra Falls. ;) as i understand it, it's better than it was a few years back. but when you see your washer floating across the basement? better is a relative term. :)

for the next few days, i'm trying to focus on cooking for my family, getting thru my interview, supporting hubby and Little Man, and getting all my bulbs planted before the ground freezes. yeah... it's not so much about the first frost as the Big Freeze, right? Chica Beanie told me - if i can still dig in the dirt, it's okay to plant. right?

hope so.

did i mention that i had to take my kitty in for major surgery yesterday? luckily, i qualified for a cosmetic surgery credit card - which also covers pet surgery - so i have a way to pay for all this. mostly, tho, it kills me that strat has to have one of his few remaining teeth yanked out. fortunately, he has a great vet, and he came thru the process with flying colors. hubby was more worried than i was, since he's never seen a pet come back from a vet all wacked out on anesthesia/pain meds. but all my boys came thru the experience in good stead. now, i just have to work out feeding strat antibiotics for a few weeks... and figuring out how to brush his remaining teeth.

wish me luck. ;)

:: scribbled at 10:42 PM ... ... o

Monday, October 31, 2005

happy Samhain!

happy Halloween, and blessed Samhain to those who observe!

i'm off to Round #1 of trick or treating with Little Man in a few minutes, then it's dinner, Round #2 with his friend who lives up the street, and homework, if i can peel him off the ceiling. :)

:: scribbled at 3:07 PM ... ... o