a little stressed out

i don’t care for adulting about large amounts of money. the large amount, in my case, is my mortgage. i need to refinance to get a lower interest rate and a lower-term mortgage and to get a home equity loan so i can fix things wrong with the house and get a new roof and put a half-bath in upstairs. but, get this. i’m *just shy* of 80% if i use the city’s assessed value as the worth. but, if i use the magic database number from the lender and the appraisal comes in like it did three years ago, i’ll be even more stressed.

after the phone call with the lender, i got a letter stating i could refi without an appraisal, but i still need to get my friend over to give me an estimate so i know how much i need to ask for.

there should be mortgage doulas. not a financial advisor; i don’t need one of those because i don’t enough extra money to pay someone to tell me what to do with the leftover i would have if i were paying someone.

meanwhile, merley is laying next to me on the couch, dreaming with her eyes open, reminding me to stop stressing about something so relatively ephemeral.

something happened

i realized yesterday, while walking to the water cooler at work, that something’s taken place over the last year or more? i feel extra-super confident. walking the dogs, making food, making decisions at work, making decisions about the house.

specifically, i thought, “we just had a phone call with a *surgeon* and i know more about something (website building) than he does. that’s pretty neat.” of course, i then started thinking about how my friend, russell, freely admits to not knowing what he’s doing and just faking being an adult. i don’t think i’m faking, but i do make shit up all the time, hoping that it’ll turn out. it seems to be going okay so far.

in other news, my friend lance is coming over to give me a bid on a new roof and a bathroom upstairs. i have enough equity to get a decent loan and a bathroom on the second floor would be so amazing. i’ve also got some landscaping notions rolling around in my grey matter but need to get a friend in the industry to come over and tell me if i’m crazy or not (about this, anyway).

back to mine

i never would have thought a new sauté pan and a new toilet (both of which were replacing ancient versions of themselves) would make me feel so much happier in my house.

i think i finally have all of the rooms the way i want them, except for the paint… i want to do the bathroom, bedroom, and living/dining room. it’s time for a change (the kitchen and hallway color is perfect).

since it’s the start of birthday week, i slept in until 9 and we coffeed on the couch, i walked the dogs, we planned a handful of meals for the week, went to woodman’s, made migas, and now he’s watching the cubs while i work on *drum roll please!*

my new food blog!

i’m really surprised at how much time it takes me to write a post! i hope it gets a little faster, but it probably won’t because i’m meticulous with my choice of words and have a lot to talk about.

it’s been good, though. i like thinking more about easy meals that i wish friends would make instead of ordering out all the time (like i used to) or eating at chain restaurants. i think, in the last 11 months, i’ve ordered for delivery six times. that’s a complete 180° from me even two years ago. it’s exciting to know that i get to re-read my cookbooks knowing how to plan for leftovers and knowing better substitutes.

i probably won’t post so much food here now, so head on over to the Gunna Finish That? facebook page or the site itself.

spring!

after a long hiatus, i finally let myself get back on the bike and stop being chauffeured around. i’ve got what i dub “saddlebutt“, which is the painful feeling right in the rear that happens when one gets on one’s bike after not biking for over a month (or more). the pain is subsiding after day four 

my mood seems uplifted lately. i’ve been arranging most of the rooms in the house, donating or regifting things that i don’t need anymore. we have a dining table, we can use the kitchen counters, and the office is next. i’d like to clean up the bookshelves and start compartmentalize things in there.

i submitted a march madness bracket at wilson’s yesterday. it’s $10 to play… maybe i’ll win a bunch back!

work has been relatively more stressful lately. i asked for a mental health day next friday. i just need to make it five more business days. rodney’s birthday is the 30th, and i’m trying to figure out where we should go for dinner. graft, morris ramen, and rare are all in the running. i’m sure you’ll hear all about it after next weekend, gentle reader.

busy weekend

on friday, we made ahi tuna steaks and steamed broccoli with rice. i used the same dressing recipe that we use for the arugula salad with roasted chicken and it was excellent.

asian dressing

we spent a while on saturday at mounds. i’m trying to find the right kind of dog food for jones because of his kidney numbers. low protein doesn’t exist apparently, because everything is “grain free” and “high protein” these days. i found some sweet potato and bison food that’s 20%. i read somewhere online that red meat is easier to digest than white for the older, kidney-issue dogs. anyhoo, it’s been a week since i got the email from the vet with this information, and i’ve emailed her twice but haven’t heard back.

then, we shopped, made breakfast, and i made another batch of fancy biscuits; charlie bears are too high in protein to give him anymore—and merle just sticks her nose up at them.

saturday night, we had bibimbap, which is a korean dish of fried rice and veggies. i had a jar of kimchi in the fridge for probably two years and finally opened it up for this. we used gwennie’s recipe and it was amazing. we talked about it all day on sunday.

bibimbap!

on sunday, we made migas, which is spanish for crumbs. it’s a way to use up old corn tortillas that would normally just crumble when folded in half. it was pretty amazing.

migas

rodney went to wilson’s to watch the badger basketball game and i tooled around the house. then picked a friend up to go to woodman’s (he’s without a car right now).

sunday night, we made portobello mushroom burgers. when i was still a veggie, these mushroom burgers permeated every menu in town. disgustingly doused in balsamic vinegar and cooked until squishy. this version was way better! lemon juice and olive oil with a little garlic, salt, pepper. and cooked until just underdone; because they had to be broiled for a minute to melt the cheese. scrumptious.

burgers and fries

oh. and the kicker this weekend: matt moved his stuff out of the basement and we discovered black mold. which may explain my inability to breathe in the winter (well, that and the cat hair in the vents).

lookin’ forward

i’m excited for this weekend; probably because we have nothing specific planned. i kinda need a few things at costco but not really, so i may postpone the trip until next weekend. 

a wilson’s friend gifted us about 30 bluegill filets which i am more than excited to turn into fish tacos. we’d like to have him over for them for dinner as a thank-you, but he’s old school, so he may not appreciate the taco aspect of fish tacos. i said i could serve them “deconstructed” (and then i laughed) because it would sorta be like a fish fry except the slaw would be pickled red onions and the dinner roll would be a couple tortillas. we’ll see what he says about it. 

i need to put vacuum to the couch because it’s still covered in cat hair and we’ve had the windows open the last few days and i’ve been unable to breathe through both nostrils at the same time. thankfully, i bought an 8-pack of kleenex from costco the last time i was there.

since merle gets a lot of photo love, i thought i’d share some pics of jones with his turkey toy.

jones playing with “robert”
robert, a.k.a. “bob the gobbler”

homeownership

i’m not 100% sure i would have signed up for being a homeowner if i knew i would be doing it all by myself eleven years later.

yesterday, the appliance repair guy came over to investigate the issue with the washing machine; it needed a new door lock mechanism. the service call, labor, and parts came to about $230. after the guy left, i noticed the basement floor drain was backing up (this had previously happened during the memorial day party prep), so i donned some rubber gloves and sent all 25′ of my hand auger down the hole, only to retrieve little more than a mouse-sized ball of hair.

then i came back upstairs and started freaking out. i think it was the closest i’d been to a panic attack in probably six years.

you see, my brain immediately goes to places like “i’m gunna need to pay someone another thousand dollars to tear apart the basement to find the 90-year-old offending pipe.”

thankfully, the plumber who tore up the basement two years ago is still plumbing. i texted him and he called me back right away and is currently downstairs with an electric auger and is making a lot of banging noises. 

i hope he is able to solve the issue without having to chase pipes around the basement again.

more good times

we got a chance to play pool last night; it had been a while as the tables weren’t available at all last weekend.

the week has flown by; unsure if that’s because our regularly scheduled programming was modified by the baseball game, or if life really is just getting that fast.

i forgot to mention that the washer stopped working, so i’m going to attempt to take it apart and unclog the drain pump on saturday? i’ll take pictures so i know how it goes back together; will post them here if anything interesting happens.

also, saturday is our 3-month anniversary and we’re going to have dinner at the tornado. i haven’t been there since a million years ago with matt. i got some fancy wedge shoes and a matching purse/shoulder bag to wear with the hippy dress that i wore to bridgette and durrell’s wedding. it doesn’t quite fit me anymore (i think i’ve lost 20 lbs since january) so i had to get some french safety pins to make some darts in the top; otherwise it won’t be very lady-like.

i’m hoping to hit up the paradise after dinner to play some pool. i think the last time i was *there* was either when the protests were happening or when we biked downtown for my birthday and it was freezing rain.

also, it’s august already. wtf?

and just like that

lance came over again last night to keep working on the deck. he’s expressed many times that “whoever built that thing shouldn’t have”. like matt suggested, it’s the bane of my existence.

he’s going to come over tonight to finish up the railing over yonder. i’m hoping the labor cost will be reasonable, but i have no idea how much he charges per hour.

pleasant surprise

i got home last night (after what may have been the most stressful start to a wordpress meetup to date–more on that later) and lance’s truck was parked in front of the house. we hadn’t talked about when he could come over to work on the deck, so i was happy to see him there.

he made so much progress in just a short amount of time! he replaced the middle support (on the left) and the three cross beams at the far end, and the post.