Sunday, March 14, 2010

How Old People Spend Time Off

OK. I'm not old. Really. I'm not. I don't get discounts at restaurants or movies because of my age. I think that's the "old meter." I reserve the right to take that back when I start getting those discounts. Then, I'll probably bump my definition of old to the age when they start questioning whether you should be driving.

Now that that's out of the way, I'd like to explain how I have spent the last few days. I took time off work because I knew that I'd be wiped out after the election. And I was. So, I decided to take care of things around my house that had been neglected for quite some time. Since my mom likes doing physical labor (I somehow missed that gene), she agreed to help - or do the really hard stuff.
Look at the pretty flowers! I planted those in a spot that was home to a few weeds. That red plant is not as full as it was the other day. It seems a cat trampled it. I blame a cat because I have seen those creatures crawling out of the bushes around the corner.
I HATE SHRUBBERY. Of any kind. One of the things I especially hate about the ones around my house is that they are so totally random. There are these two types in the front and one holly bush. It's like the previous homeowners just walked into the landscaping department and said, "What's left on sale? We'll take it!" These looked pretty scruffy for good reason: I hope they die. It would be much easier to yank them out if they weren't full. I wished death upon these bushes during the winter freezes - no luck.
This spot used to be home to four different types of shrubs right off my back patio. Again, random plant choices. I have hated these from the day I moved in. I believe they were put there because the house has no gutters and the rain falling off the roof probably hits the ground pretty hard. It turns out, these bushes weren't so hard to remove. There are a couple of root stumps sticking out. I'm hoping the summer sun beats down on them and prevents them from growing - especially the fern-type bush with thorns. That thing is a big, fat jerk! I got stuck with a thorn that went through my glove and my finger hurt for three days.
I replaced boards that were rotting. It turns out, I'm REALLY good at this. So, if any of you want to come over and redo my posts, come one over. I could do the whole fence in no time!
You do not need to turn your head for this photo. Those are new blinds in my bedroom. This window takes the brunt of the afternoon sun. It had plastic blinds that had warped from the heat. They were cheap and nasty. After living in this house for three years, I finally decided to replace them. So, I went to Lowe's and had blinds cut for the window. While the guy had the blinds on the machine, I was wondering if I had the measurements right. I got them home and a couple of days later, I go to put them up and realize I mixed up the length with the height. Lucky for me, Lowe's took them back and I got the right size. The instructions say the installation takes 15 minutes. LIARS! It took about 15 minutes to figure out where to put the brackets so that the blinds would just slide in. Then, it took about 10 minutes to cuss at the drill, screws and wall. Once that was done, the blinds just slid into place. Voila! The blinds work so well, I took an afternoon nap and the bedroom did not feel like a sauna! YAY!
It wasn't all work. I got a new grill as a gift from my parents. The old one died. This one uses "infrared heat" to cook the food. And it has this unusual tray that catches the grease and makes it drip slowly so you don't have big flare ups. That's what it said. I have used it once and there was a slight flare up. Also, this is kind of a pain to clean. I'm hoping that was just the first time because I really like to grill chicken.

So, now that all that work is done, it's almost time for me to return to work. And I have a few reminders about the work that's been done over these last few days.
My trash can is full - and pick up day isn't until Tuesday! I also have bags of trash that won't fit in the can, along with boards and the old blinds. It will probably take me a few weeks to get rid of that stuff. Also, I'm hoping there's a bulk trash pick up coming soon so I can wheel that old grill to the curb. If I didn't have a Home Owners Association to deal with, I'd do that now because I know someone would pick up that grill in no time.

So that's how I spent my time off - doing grown up chores. Totally not fun. I'm already trying to figure out when I could take more time off and do absolutely nothing. This time, I mean it.
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