Friday, May 27, 2016

A word from a member of my church family that resonated today.  I want to remember where the multiple passages of perfect reference were, so I am placing it here.  Maybe someone else needs to read Psalm 91 today and know that because they have made the Lord their dwelling place - no evil shall be allowed to befall them, and no plague come near their tent.

I... will not fear the terror of the night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in darkness, nor the destruction that wastes at noonday. 

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

It's time to talk about the vacation like it didn't seem like an eternity ago already.  We flew out on Thursday, the 12th way too early.  This did get us into San Juan and to our hotel by 2pm.  After dropping off our luggage we walked about for a while.  The hotel had nifty bathtubs up on the roof which would have been great to watch the sunset, had there been a good sunset to watch.  It was pretty cloudy and meh the first day and rainy the second.  I guess it's a good thing I didn't book a kayak trip to one of the biolumescent bays, as I'm sure the meh weather would have made it less exciting.

Second day, more walking around, including following the path that they've finished from El Morro to the Raices Fountain, a short stop at Casa Blanca (a strong house built for but never inhabited by Ponce de Leon), and the Parque Las Palomas (Pigeon Park).

When it comes to coffee and delights in San Juan we tried the Choco Bar (twice - once for a snack and once for breakfast), Mojito's for local dinner fare (a recommendation from a guy at our hotel), Don Ruiz (for coffee), Calficultura (for breakfast and coffee), Cuatro Sombras (for ... are you catching on - more coffee - and a sammie).  We also stopped after our long walk for a mojito and a pina colada at a bar just off of the Paseo La Princesa.

Our third "day" there we headed to meet Adventure of the Seas (after some of that breakfast and coffee).  She looked in great shape considering she is going into dry dock later this year.  Staff was good.  Food was good.  We didn't hit all of the shows or run to all of the other things to do, but we did play ping pong, ice skate, and eat eat eat.

We quickly arrived in St Thomas where we did a Sunny Liston tour around the island (I've done this before, but it was his first visit).  I got my banana daiquiri at the mountaintop and we went to the third beach selection, which I had never been to before.  Coki was recommended as good for snorkeling, and boy was it - so many fish. The stand we rented snorkel equipment from even gave us large milkbones which drew the fish (and birds) in like crazy.  I have plenty of photos of the fish, seagulls, a duck, and a pelican.  We also saw urchins, but I didn't catch a picture.

Next day St Kitts.  We've both been there before - this is where we really start the places that a consensus couldn't be reached on what to do... so I made an executive decision and we headed out with Thenford Grey's tours to Nevis.  It was a good day and we saw plenty.  Our time at this beach felt a bit wasted.  The sand was nice, but there was no shade and we didn't swim.  Instead we went into Sunshines, a popular beach bar and had amazing fall off the bone wings and a killer bee drink (or two).

After a day at sea we then went to Curacao.  This was a first time visit for both of us.  Remember how I said we didn't reach decisions on what to do?  We ended up walking around near the pier.  Fortunately here there was a nice mix of things.  I love the local market scenes.  We did try a batido (fruit-based smoothie) but we didn't stop at the local foodery.  It was kind of neat to walk across the pontoon walking bridge and watch them open it up to allow boats through the passage.

Next up, Aruba - another first timer where we walked around near the pier... I really wish we could have picked someone to tour with.  I don't really feel like I was "in" Aruba as a result of seeing basically shopping.  I did catch a pink iguana (strawberry colada).

Another day at sea and we were back to San Juan to fly home... which took until well past midnight thanks to getting trapped longer in Charlotte (Charlotte always screws me).  At least it was a short drive to his place instead of the whole way home.  That was saved for the next day after I hit a few open houses and fell in unexpected love with - of all things - a townhouse - but I already talked about that in another post.
Being a landlord is not easy. Every time someone gives their notice it stresses me out. The hunt for a new tenant stresses me out. The time to get it cleaned up and ready for showing in between is draining. Telling a tenant about an issue you have they need to correct is really stressful. I've been pretty lucky with tenants as far as their individual/personal level of crazy, but I've seen/experienced some things too that make me twitch. Some things are directly their fault, others are circumstance that could have been avoided. Bottom line, it isn't a quick and easy addition to your income.

Regardless, I was ready to be done being a landlord a while ago. Part of readying the house to sell was to get away from that role that I no longer wanted to participate in. I want to say "it's funny", but I can't as that is simply too glib for how I feel about it all right now, so I'll go with Alanis and say "isn't it ironic" that other things creep up at just the right (wrong) time that might dash my efforts from the past few months.

I came back feeling relaxed from vacation. Today I have a knot forming in my back and I got roughly 5 hours of sleep last night after a late eye close and an early eye open (I woke early thanks to another bird who is now bouncing off of my bedroom windows - did I tell you about him?) Right now I feel like some horrible author re-wrote a story just for the movie of my life, combining "The Money Pit", "The Birds", and a healthy dose of other people's drama that you cannot keep from impacting you.

I did see a place I really liked, so much so I wanted to cry and didn't want to leave the open house... but it was a townhouse with very little dog space and an HOA that was the nail in any "can I tolerate this" question I had. But like I hinted at above... I may not be going anywhere for quite a while if circumstance turns the way I am seeing it.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

I'm alive.  I was away last week on a cruise with my Favorite Egg.  I just don't have it in me to give much in the way of details right now.  My time since I returned to town has been one annoyance after another and I'm just tired and done for right now.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

I just commented to Mrs Law that there might be a hidden diamond in the wine I still have stockpiled.  Tonight I opened one I was very curious about... boom.  BANANA - and YES, it's still very very good.  That is what has been fueling my evening's work - at least everything since mowing the lawn.  Yeah, it needed that again already.

The basement is scrubbed up (again - since the dirt from the garage resulted in paw prints throughout the basement) and wet/dry vac'ed to get more fur.  I swept up the garage because the sewer guy is done!  It was fun bringing the dogs in and taking the mower out over the wet concrete.  The kitchen floor is re-washed.  I'll scrub the tub again as I shower tonight.  I've also been trying to keep up on the little things that you tend to leave sitting around (a piece of paper here, a pen there, etc etc).

Since there is nothing but rain on the forecast my realtor and I decided we need to just leap and let folks know that the deck will be stained soon.  So yea.  That's happening in the next couple of days.  Oh boy here we go.  More banana wine please.

Monday, May 09, 2016

Well the sewer guy called and plans to be here tomorrow to finish things up... that is, if it all passes the pressure test.  *deep breath*  The two new posts are on the deck and ready to stain... ready to stain I say!  It was overcast most of today, but no rain (yet).  At least there is some progress, right?  The lawn looks like it is nearing the need for another mow... and it's only been just over a week.  Yeah, I don't have time for all that. I'm waiting to hear back from my guy to see if there is one more year to be had from him before he hangs it up.

Progress was also made at my Favorite Egg's old place to make a repair, do some lawn maintenance, and to get HIS sewer work underway.

Saturday, May 07, 2016

My garage was ripped up on Friday - so that bill is underway.  Since the carpet was cleaned I can't bring the dogs back in that way, and now the garage is a mess, so that's less than fun too. It will be good to get past all of this.  There is rain on the forecast for darn near every day - that means the deck can't dry out and they can't get to staining.

Here's hoping things can come together by next weekend. My desire to be on the market in April has now become mid-May.  *sigh*

Thursday, May 05, 2016

I am not as ahead as I would like to be on my hours this week - thanks to needing to run around for different household activities.  It all needs done, but it still frustrates me.

The paperwork did get completed and many of the photos taken, but now we wait... for the weather to cooperate so the deck can get stained and the posts fixed that needed done.  THEN we can take the last couple of photos and move forward.

This evening I got to have dinner and ice cream with Lori.  It was nice to get to relax with no agenda to cross off for the evening.  But the list waits for another day.

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

I'm not going to freak out. I'm not going to freak out. I'm not going to freak out.

*takes a deep breath*

Today is a big day. There is paperwork to do, there are photos to be taken. Oh boy.

Monday, May 02, 2016

Today has been rough.  I woke up to a panic attack around 6am.  My mind just roared me awake thinking "what are you doing - you're giving up a place with a fence for your dogs".  I can't bail on things... I just can't allow the fear of the unknown to take away what I've been working towards.

This evening I mowed front and back since it was relatively dry.  Things should look decent for photos on Wednesday.  I also scrubbed the kitchen, bath, and dining room floors, and the shower.  I've cleaned up more odds and ends that hadn't been hidden away.  Tomorrow I dust, vacuum, and do those types of things.  How do I quiet the doubts?

Sunday, May 01, 2016

I went to my favorite Egg's this weekend.  I admit, I just wanted to be at home.  Mentally, I just need to sleep for a week - I'm spent.  I looked at three places w/ a realtor out there on Friday night, hit one open house by myself on Saturday, and hit a couple more open houses today before returning home.  Truly, the newer houses all look exactly the same - right down to the complete and utter lack of yard ending in either a cliff or a hill that makes you frightened you might be responsible for mowing it.  The older homes tend to be not just older, but not kept up and/or landing in neighborhoods that make me turn up my nose.

At this point, I feel like my desires are overbearing.  I feel that concessions are being made - ones that will take me down a path I'm all to familiar with.  I know I need to get out of the area, but the rest of the scenario makes me wonder where I am supposed to go and what I'm supposed to do.  Yes, having someone is what finally inspired me to leap, and I'm too weak to take steps on my own.  Some things just aren't part of some people's destinies.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

I showered and washed my hair.  Since the drain is not running smoothly this left a good bit of water when I was done.  I decided to try and fish some of my hair out - which is one of the grossest things on the planet in my view, but I am tired of waiting for the contractor to come so they can get to that.  I got a bunch out, but now the tub isn't draining at all.  I'm so done.
I should be in a good mood... I've had some good news today, but I'm also frustrated.  Let's get those tidbits out of the way first.

Contractors - yes, I do want the work done, but I need to have a quote from you so I'm not surprised or trapped.  I mean, is that really too much to ask for?  Also, needing to ask you back and forth to clarify the oddities on a quote are tedious.  The carpets are dry... but I can also see there was some furniture not moved and cleaned under.  Yeah, that doesn't please me either.

There is also the continued feeling of hemorrhaging money.  I know it costs more to have other people do things for you... but sometimes it is ridiculous and you feel like you're being taken for a ride because they know you're on a timeline.  It wouldn't even be such a huge timeline if it didn't take a week or more to get the quote.  Oh - and then I had a telemarketer call that was unfortunate enough in that I answered the phone thinking it could have been someone I needed to talk to.

Now the good stuff... a question was raised the other day regarding the zoning of my house.  Believe me this was a very bad and stressful thing for the past couple of days.  Fact is, the apartment was an apartment (rented out even) when the house was purchased so many years ago.  To even think that it could have been zoned and marked as a single family residence?  Ugh.  I don't even want to think about what that could have meant if I hadn't gotten the good news that the updated maps show it properly.

The other good stuff is that I have gotten my answer at work, and it is the one I wanted.  This should leave me overjoyed and it should override all of the other annoyances today - but I can't even fully bask in it.  And bask in it I should!  I feel like this was an answered prayer - one that I finally put down and allowed God to pick it up by setting the date to put the house on the market.  I'm doubting so much about direction and it all boils down to having a safe place to lean.  I'm ready to not do this all on my own any more - but I still feel alone.  That speaks too loudly for me.