Um. Well.

Jul. 30th, 2012 03:57 pm
margotvankapelle: (sun)
We went through this house today.  It's a couple of blocks from Boe's school; we can see the roof of the school building from one of the back bedrooms.  It's also in an "urban renewal" zone, which tends to be code for "crime tends to be high", but in looking at the statistics, this little area is a growing oasis of lower crime rates than elsewhere in the zip code.  There are crazy amounts of tax exemptions and credits one can claim as well as some of the lowest housing costs in the city.

Let's face it:  Is it possible to have brand-new stick built construction anywhere else in the entire flipping United States for less than $90,000?  Yeah, didn't think so.  Besides, it is just the architecture that Boe and I really like and he fell in love with the place as soon as he walked in the door. 

  This house (and its companion house at 2412 Gay St.) have sat empty for the past 4 years; they were originally closer to $130,000 but then the housing market went to crap and basically everyone lost interest in buying real estate.  So the nonprofit group that owns these properties is making down payment assistance available as well as very favorable lending terms through a partnership with the Urban League.

So we've applied to be considered for the house at 2416 Gay.  We'll see if they approve us; the worst they can say is "no".
margotvankapelle: (sun)
I've been window-shopping online to furnish whatever house we get after I'm done with school.  *sigh*

I'd kind of like to completely start over when we move.  Our current furnishings are hand me downs (which aren't our style but were free) or furniture so cheaply made that it's pretty much broken-down already (looking at you, dining room set and living room set).  I'd like to get furniture that reflects us, rather than my mom or various relatives or what we could afford via layaway at Big Lots.

One of then things that is definitely on the lsit of things to get is a robotic floor cleaner.  I am such a lazy person and we have 5 animals currently in the house...so it doesn't matter how many times I sweep, there are always hair "tumbleweeds" around.  And the floor always feels gritty.  We don't have carpet downstairs; vinyl in the kitchen -- which is starting to peel away in front of the kitchen sink, might I add, as a result of a rotting subfloor due to a plumbing leak the was never fixed -- and oak floors in the living room and front parlor/craft room.

More later, I think.

DO NOT WANT

Jul. 5th, 2012 11:43 pm
margotvankapelle: (bollocks)
I checked the weather forecast for the next couple of days and nearly fell over.

Al Gore?  You can have your freaking global warming back; we don't want it.

Okay, game plan is to hole up in my bedroom all day with the critters, since three of the five are elderly.  Any panting, heat exhaustion type symptoms and they go into a cool shower with me.

Voila, my plans for the weekend.




Note to self:  The next house will have central air.  This is ridiculous. 
margotvankapelle: (Default)
My sister and her family are on their way north...I am so excited about being able to see them all!

I still have the urge to sew but no one has touched the Tornado Room although I have asked...In retrospect, I probably should have had my sister get a couple of N95 (ultra-super-HEPA particulate-proof) masks from her workplace so I could just go ahead and do it myself. Maybe those would be effective against whatever I'm allergic to in the dust there.

In other news, our garden yield is going to be low, but adequate for our household. We've been behind getting everything into the ground in a timely fashion...and Boe managed to mow down my new lilac, raspberry, and blackberry bushes. He says he "didn't notice" them. Yeah, I don't know how one "doesn't notice" knee-high plants either, especially when the grass is only ankle-height. And he wonders why I want him on ADD/ADHD medication.


Posted via m.livejournal.com.

margotvankapelle: (internetforever)
Between work and school, I barely know which direction is up.  I really really want to sew, but can't really do that until the Tornado Room (so named because it's a disaster area) is cleared out -- I tried to clear it out myself, but my face broke out in hives and I began to wheeze about five minutes in.  Not good.  So I have to get The Spouse and The Daughter to do that for me...which means it might get done by the end of 2012.  If I'm lucky.

In other news, my sister Mel is driving up from Florida on a quick visit to drop my neice off with my parents for a portion of the summer.  Let's see if Bitz can learn to share Lennie this season.  Unfortunately, Mel is driving up on the weekend with the highest volume of cake sales for the year...Graduation Weekend for FWCS.  I tried to find a replacement (there's a coworker who doesn't normally work weekends), but apparently the only family that matters is the one this cow-irker has, not anyone else's.  Even after I explained that I haven't seen my sister in a couple of years.  I was delighted, let me tell you.  >:-/  So I'm going to have to call off one of the busiest sales days of the year and leave my coworker H screwed with no help.  H and I talked it over and we mutually decided that if I have to call off to see my sister, then Sunday would be the better day.  So that's the game plan.  At least 1 coworker is understanding.

Uh, other than that, school is going well.  One instructor has publicly stated on numerous occasions that she doesn't give A's ever...well guess what lady, you're going to have to change that stance.  *cracks knuckles*

I keep motivating myself by looking at real estate listings and home builders' websites.  Also looking at vehicles, since my poor Lumina will probably last me until I'm out of school (I hope!) but not much longer than that.  I'm kinda leaning in this direction, since that allows for some flexibility as far as cargo and stuff goes but is more fuel-efficient than an SUV or truck.  Or I'd like a Prius.  I'd like 40-odd mpg, you know?
margotvankapelle: (fridaylove)
I found my house.  Now I just have to get through school to be able to afford it.

In a fit of antsiness, last night I busted out my embroidery materials for the first time in a couple of years and have started blackworking a shirt collar.  Well, I'm using Aida cloth and kelly green cotton floss, so it's not accurate at all, but it was in my stash, I didn't have any other use for it, and frankly anyone who wants to snark me for it can go hang. 

 In other news, I found out why I haven't seen any mice all winter...I found Princess's stockpile of mummified mousie corpses behind the couch. Eight of them.  *shudder*
margotvankapelle: (internetforever)
Mental to-do list:

Today--
Make sure Boe mows the lawn
Clean litter boxes
Deep-clean living room
Type depression paper

Tomorrow--
Moar laundry
Clean out closet
Take closet leavings to Goodwill

Thursday--
Clean bathroom
Moar laundry

Friday--
Work on garden
margotvankapelle: (madesense)
I know, it tends to go poorly for me.  But I've been thinking...once I'm out of school, and we're able to afford to move, a little 3 bedroom 1.5 bath Cape Cod on a finished basement over in a neighborhood near to our current one would be perfect -- they are very reasonably priced (average is $70,000), they are old enough to have character through previous owner modifications, and they are just awfully darned cute.  They are post WWII building boom homes on the west side of town.  Nice neighborhood, close to parks and grocery stores, you know the homeowning drill.

After that house, though...

I'm thinking strawbale construction.  I'd like to go as close to off-grid as possible (while still remaining hooked up to utilities if needed).  You know, passive solar design, solar panels on the roof, rainwater collection system, greywater recycling, that sort of thing.  To be honest, I kinda draw the line at a chemical toilet, though.  :-P  I just like how organic and comforting the architecture of strawbale and/or adobe homes are.  While adobe really would probably not work well in northeast Indiana, strawbale definitely would. 

It's something to while away my excess time and energy while we are financially struggling, and learning more about it will certainly stand me in good stead if we decide to go that route at some point in the future.
margotvankapelle: (holdingroses)
Saturday was a little rough for me emotionally.  I had to get a refund on Boe's layaway gifts because we just can't afford them.  Unfortunately, one is only able to get a refund on one's layaway at the store at which one put the item aside for layaway.  So I had to get a refund at "my" store where they know me.  It was embarrassing on quite a few levels.  And then to boot, because I wasn't able to put much money on the layaway in the first place and because there is a $10 fee to cancel the layaway, I only got $10.25 back.   I came home feeling an awful lot like George Bailey about midway through It's a Wonderful Life.  That kicked-dog feeling. 

Sunday was a little better.  On a suggestion from a gardener on my f-list, I read up on lasagna gardening.  Well, yesterday I dragged Boe out of the house and back to my store, where we got a car-trunk-full of cardboard boxes and expired newspapers.  Today I am making a run to Starbucks and asking for their spent coffee grounds to spread on my garden-to-be.  We have fall's leaves on top of the cardboard  on a 15' x 20' area up against our backyard's levee wall; this will eventually be our garden.  Last year the weeds and random-seeded plants grew out of control, and our dickbag neighbors called neighborhood code enforcement as their first line of action instead of coming over and talking to us.  We got it mowed down, well, kind of, but we'd rather not deal with those neighbors again.  So the garden will help with that.  Sure, it might not be the prettiest thing ever, but it's something the city can't ding us for, it will be a food source for us, and frankly, I plan to can our extras in my spare time this summer in order to give some away as Christmas gifts.  I have sweet corn, popcorn, tomatoes, hot peppers, watermelon, and cucumbers planned; if I have room I'd like to add some sunflowers and some lavender (sunflowers for the birdies, lavender for me).  I might need to make an additional plot for those.  I can get compost for free through Allen County Solid Waste Management (fees only apply to folks dropping off compostable materials).

My aunt has repeatedly told me that I can have as many lilac starts as I want, and Bitz has offered me her volunteer roses of sharon.  I figure if we plant alternating lilacs and roses of sharon in the direction of the dickbag neighbors, it will grow to become a living hedge.  Between the free composting materials, free plant starts, seeds I already have on hand, and stuff acquired through Freecycle and Craigslist, this year's landscaping should run me less than $20 total.

Dang.  If this turns out to be a success, once we're financially stable we might need to purchase a pickup truck, lol.

Teehee

Oct. 9th, 2011 07:51 pm
margotvankapelle: (pumpkins)
We decorated the outside of our house for Halloween for the first time in 2 years.  Boe and I picked up some glow-in-the-dark acrylic craft paint to
touch up the fake tombstones, some really adorable skeleton lights, a couple of cute little skull lawn stakes, and a large ghoul-in-a-hanging-cage to add to our fake tombstones, cemetery fencing, giant spiderweb, seven or eight giant spiders, blacklights, and orange mini lights. 


I'll try to get pictures tomorrow, when I get home from school...it's a bit dark at the moment.
margotvankapelle: (ooooooo)

So to recap:

Random Gamer Guy is gone...but not before stealing a pack of Magic: The Gathering cards Boe had picked up that Friday.  I don't care too much, except Boe is unhappy, and that makes me unhappy.

Boe's temp job is finished up, and now we wait to hear from the agency for another assignment.

I might have tied one on last Friday to celebrate Random Gamer Guy's departure; the hangover served to remind me that I am not as young as I once was, and that my liver hates me.

Boe and I held a little backyard barbecue on Saturday.  Everything was delicious and (as is par the course for me) since I bought too much food, we'll be eating burgers and hot dogs the rest of the week.  But they are delicious, and that's the important part.

My college's financial aid office is screwing around with me, and I don't like it.  My account has been flagged for verification Every. Single. Year. and this year was no exception.  I turned in copies of my tax return on July 18, and my account is STILL "pending, under review."  This means that they have not released my financial aid to the bookstore so I can get my books.  Because school starts in a week, I'm sure all of the used copies of the textbooks have been sold, so I'll either need to rent textbooks (which is what I'm considering) or buy brand new ones.  I am tempted to go to the financial aid office tomorrow and break some heads.

And the only paperwork I'm waiting on to complete my nursing program applications (yes, two:  one for the LPN program and one for the RN program) is my highschool transcripts.  I called my alma mater a week ago Tuesday to request 2 sets of official transcripts.  The said they'd be in the mail that same day.  I should have recieved them by Wednesday.  They are still not here.  I am tempted to go down there and break some heads too.

I am so excited at the prospect of being able to work on sewing projects!
margotvankapelle: (clowns will eat)

So.

Because I was a little antsy, a little bored this evening, I decided to scope out my area's real estate listings.  And I found   this.  Yep, it needs work, no doubt about it.  BUT.  It has 5 bedrooms.  That's a lot of room.  AND.  It's in the suburb in which I grew up, which is quite possibly the safest place on the planet.  AND.  The schools are good (I should know -- I went there!).  AND.  We'd have a garage.  I've never had a garage before.  Hell, never had a driveway before.  AND.  Look at the price.  I mean, LOOK at the price.  That price right there?  If Boe and I bought that house, and rented out our current one, the rent from the one we're in now would cover both mortgage payments and then some.  I'm not afraid of sweat equity.  We could do this.  We could do this, and then we wouldn't have to move at all after I'm done with school, and we could adopt at that point without having to juggle a move in the middle of all of it. 

It's insane, I know.  But it's possible.

ETA:  Well, poop.  I re-read the description, and under Notes it reads, "Repair foundation and plumbing."  There is no way in hell I am buying a house that requires foundation work.  Oh well, another pipe dream up in smoke.
margotvankapelle: (housekeeper from hell)

So, in the 48 hours that RGG has been aware that he will be moving out no later than 8 PM on August 12, he was at the computer playing some sort of fantasy wizarding game all day yesterday (we're talking well over 15 hours, here).  How do I know?  I was here all day yesterday.  Today, he has spent what appears to be all day at the computer, playing yet another fantasy wizarding game.  He was playing it when I left for work this morning, he is still playing it as we speak.  According to Boe, who asked RGG, RGG has not left the house in those 48 hours.

It appears, so far as I can tell, that RGG has not even begun to look for a place to stay.

Boe and I were chatting this evening, and things really became crystal clear to me when Boe told me that RGG had tried to come to a gentleman's agreement with Boe to allow him to stay past the 12th if RGG was unable to find a new place by that time.  Apparently, one of the things that RGG said to him was that I couldn't throw [RGG] out because it wasn't my house. 

Let me write that out again, just in case you missed it:  

According to RGG, this roof over my head is not my house.

 It's Boe's house, and Boe wasn't the one to write out the notice to vacate, so really, RGG just needed to pay the past due rent and everything would be okay again.  Boe, bless him, just took one long look at RGG and told him that I (Krista)  have made the mortgage payments on the house for the past year with money I earned, so I can damned well do as I please in a house I am paying the mortgage on.  Boe finally stood up for me and told RGG that he (Boe) completely supports any and all decisions I make, especially when my happiness is at stake.  So, yes, RGG would indeed have to leave no later than 8 PM on the 12th, and furthermore, Boe fully agrees with the decision to evict RGG.

Things really clicked for me when Boe was telling me this little anecdote, and I realized that every request I have made of RGG he has double-checked with Boe.  And that also explains why RGG doesn't cook for himself, or clean up after himself, or anything like that...he's expecting me to do it because that's women's work.

That pathetic motherfucker's a misogynist of the first water. 

I daresay that he will be stunned when Boe drops him off at the Rescue Mission Shelter the evening of the 12th and his stuff is on the front porch.  Meanwhile, I will be changing the locks.  I'm a smart girl and I know how to use power tools.  Fear me, RGG. Fear me.


margotvankapelle: (housekeeper from hell)

In my minor fit of productivity today, I sent out several applications on Boe's behalf.  One of them is for a charter school here in Fort Wayne, and THAT would be ideal, so I'll keep my fingers crossed.

Oh, and I made our weekly bread:


That's just one batch -- there were 2 other batches as well, and the cell phone in the bottom right of the picture is for scale.  I decided to do up our bread as large rolls so I can freeze them individually instead of taking the risk of mold growth (hot, humid environment) after a paltry 3 days.  I must say, this is my best attempt yet at bread/rolls.  The crumb turned out very even and just ever so slightly sweet, and the crust was nice and chewy, but not painfully so.  I pretty much eyeballed everything, so there really wasn't a recipe unless you count 2 cups water, 1 package yeast (my starter got really gross and I was afraid of contamination issues, so I tossed it), 1 stick melted butter, 1 cup sugar, salt to taste, and then enough white flour to make everything come together nicely.  I thnk it might have worked out to 4-6 cups of flour, when all's said and done.  This was a single-rise bread, since I formed the dough into balls before letting anything rise.  Dough is done rising when it doesn't bounce back after being poked gently. 15 minutes per batch in a 350 degree oven, and they came out perfectly.  See?



And I just realized they look an awful lot like manchet bread loaves were/are supposed to be like... 
 


margotvankapelle: (housekeeper from hell)

Here's what I had planned to get done today:

Clean the bathroom (Yes, with RGG in the house I use medical-grade latex gloves, no worries, darlings!)

Get 5 loads of laundry done

Clean the bedroom

Here's what I actually accomplished:

Threw 1 load of clothes into the washer (in my defense, the cats had soaked some articles of clothing in that particular load, so I had to run it twice with a bunch of white vinegar to get the smell completely out)

Whined about not being able to go to Pennsic as usual this year

Figured out Pennsic tentage for NEXT year (it has crossed my mind that I am either the poster child for the adage "Hope springs eternal" or for the one that goes "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result."  Not sure which one applies, I'll let y'all come to your own conclusions.)

Watched The Steve Wilkos Show -- OK, I admit it, I like the trainwreckiness of trash talk shows.

Aaaaaaaaand that's about it.
margotvankapelle: (lolnado)
When I got off of work today, every WM in town was out of air conditioners, the same was true for Meijer's, Lowe's, Home Depot, Menard's, Target, Big Lots, and Dollar General (not like I really expected DG to have air conditioners, but I was desperate).

Boe found one -- count 'em, one -- air conditioning unit (and stood guard over it) at our local Do It Best hardware store, where I promptly dispatched myself and my debit card. It seems the unit had been on hold for someone for 5 days, but was never picked up.  As an added bonus, the manager took an extra forty bucks off of the retail price since it was a discontinued model.  Score!

When Boe had called me to report success on The Quest For Air Conditioning, I was stepping out of a tepid shower with three very angry cats joining me in the bathroom.  See, all three of the cats were panting and had rapid breathing when I came home, which are signs of heat exhaustion.  So I was a bad Mommy for their own good and took one cat at a time into the tepid shower with me, 15 minutes per cat.  Now, you might think that this isa recipe for Disembowelment By Cat Claws, but one thing that I've learned about cats is that they have an innate sense of fairness.  That's why my arms get turned into mincemeat when I try to bathe them, but they don't claw me when I have them in the shower with me, even though there is substantially more flesh to tear into when doing so.  Sure, they struggled a bit, but nothing involving claws or teeth.  I think they think that if they have to get wet, it is only Right and Proper that I get soaked too.

Anyway, I'm pretty sure we managed to buy the last available air conditioner in a three county area.  We've moved the animals into the bedroom, complete with litter box, food, and water, and our bedroom is finally beginning to cool down.  I might actually get to sleep tonight.
margotvankapelle: (housekeeper from hell)
  • Bread dough:  Almost risen.  There's a lot of dough there, so I think I'll make 2 loaves and an unknown number of hard rolls.  I can always freeze the extra loaf and the rolls.  Recipe here.
  • Bathroom:  Toilet cleaned.  Still need to clean the tub, counters, mirror, and floor.
  • Living room:  Fuzzy floors.  I need to sweep the stairs and the living room...it is astounding how much pet hair accumulates in a week.  Little kittyhair tumbleweeds everywhere!
  • Laundry:  Never done.  Three loads completed so far today, two of which were dried on the clothesline outside.  It's a nice day and Lord knows we can use the little bit of savings on our electric bill.  The other load was towels, which take FOREVER to dry on the line.  More laundry to come later on tonight.

margotvankapelle: (housekeeper from hell)
I'm going to knock out some chocolate-dipped cocnut macaroons today, as well as some chocolate-dipped pretzels -- the pretzels were left over from making chex mix. It keeps me out of trouble, right?

We did a bunch of spring cleaning yesterday and my mom came by with some surprise petunias to plant alongside the side of our house. Boe got the lawn seed and fertilizer spread over our nuked-from-orbit lawn...I'm hoping that the seed takes root and grows fairly quickly.

I go back to work on Monday and I really don't wanna. Oh well.
margotvankapelle: (ooooooh)
First of all, we needed a new mower. So while we were at the store, we also picked up:

A cat statue to put on Fagan's grave (it's been almost a year since he passed, after all, I think it's about time!)

An invisible dog fence for Miss Maggie...I let her out yesterday to potty, and 30 seconds later I get a phone call from our neighbors across the street. Maggie had decided to run out into traffic in order to visit them. *sigh*

Roundup herbicide -- we're killing off the lawn and starting over

Grass seed

Weed and feed

Grub killer

2 large planters

A small planter

A hanging planter

10 begonias

16 pansies

8 petunias

and

2 fuschias

I have spent the afternoon planting to my heart's content. Boe has been spraying herbicide on everything in our yard (I did make sure to cover the lilac bush and the sole remaining rose bush before he started in on the herbicide), and we've been burning handfuls of leaves mixed in with a little bit of firewood. That way we don't get nailed for burning leaves in city limits. A handful at a time is enough to tell anyone who asks that we're using it as tinder. Not nearly as smoky, either.
margotvankapelle: (blunt)
OMG.

THIS HOUSE.

ANYBODY HAVE A SPARE $100,000 I CAN BORROW?

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