Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Lived with this annoyance over a year!

And I am not talking about my lovely wife. I am talking about our annoying tub spout with diverter. You know, that thing in your Tub/Shower that you pull on every morning to divert the water from the tub to your shower head. From the day we moved in, our tub spout made an awful noise while we showed. This is pretty much daily, sometimes twice a day if Mrs. Fix-It showered, for almost two years. I am not going to use this blog post to discuss Mrs. Fix-Its' hygiene routine, for the most part she smells good, so I won't complain. I will discuss, however, that this was annoying. Over 800 times I likely had to jiggle the little knob on the spout to get it to stop making the noise. It became part of the routine.

So, what was going on? The diverter on the tub spout is like a door that blocks water from coming out of the spout and makes the water find an alternate path, your shower head. With water flowing past the spout and out the shower head it creates a little pressure to hold it in place. The diverter is a little plastic piece attached to the knob. As our spout aged, the diverter likely became worn and it would leak, creating this awful noise. We would jiggle it, basically playing with it till it sealed properly, and the noise would go away.
This was a really easy fix. I picked up a new universal tub spout with diverter from the Home Depot. There was a small setscrew on the bottom of the existing spout, just like the new one. Loosened the screw, a couple twists, and a good yank got the old one off the pipe. Yours may be attached by a threaded fitting, so if it doesn't come off fairly easy, you might have to unscrew. Whatever the case, it should not be difficult to remove. I slid the new spout on, got it positioned, and tightened the screw. It took me 3 minutes.
The noise was gone. It took me 3 minutes. The new piece cost $16 plus tax. Yet, I lived with the noise and addition to my routine for almost 2 years.

Was it too complicated? I moved the sink in my kitchen, so probably not.

Never made it to the store? I was at Home Depot 6 times during some weekends.

What could possibly have been the reason I put off spending $16 and 3 minutes of my time to get rid of this annoyance? Maybe we'll never know. What I do know is that I am less likely to wake up my wife during her beauty sleep, the neighbors like us a little more, and I don't have to jiggle the stupid knob anymore.

Any stupid little things you are putting off?

Monday, May 30, 2011

Sunday Night Blues

 I've definitely got a case of the Sunday Night Blues. It does help that it is actually Monday (yay shorter work week!) and also that we had an amazing holiday weekend. But still, there's laundry to be done, things to be organized, meals to plan and that general revvvv-up for the week stuff.

This weekend was great, though - we managed to squeeze in a lot and when the weather got bad I was able to complete my Happiest Baby on the Block certification requirements. I was suspicious that Mr. Fix-It was listening in the background, especially when he attempted to swaddle me in bed this morning. We did do a practice swaddle on my childhood CareBear just for good measure. Ok, 4 times. And his were always tighter. Grrrrrr....

Also, those of you reading in Google Reader, come on over and peek at the updates to our blog! The wonderful Joy of How Joyful was fantastically patient with me in making some tweaks and changing some colors around for us. While you're visiting feel free to officially "follow" via Google Friend Connect. You know, if nothing else but stroke my ego.

Ok, enough procrastinating. Time to get a few things done. How was your weekend?

Friday, May 27, 2011

Drilling, Hole-Filling, and a Change of Aesthetic

When we first moved in to our condo it was obvious that our kitchen was missing a few finishing touches. I'll add that it was also missing a design aesthetic, but I've probably harped on that enough. (Seriously though, I just noticed/remembered the flood light to the left of the cabinets. Like an actual OUTDOOR flood light. Gaaaah!)

Anyway, in addition to putting a white coat of paint on the cabinets and changing the wall color we also added some hardware. See it yet?

Thursday, May 26, 2011

One Shell Of A Wedding! : Wave On Wave

In preparation for our first dance, Mr. Seashell and I signed up for dancing lessons. Part of the reason was because we chose a song that we, frankly, had no clue how to dance to.

Assuming you've come to learn a little about me, it should surprise you that our first dance was to an upbeat country song. It should be even more surprising that I suggested it. But sometime early into dating Mr. Seashell I came to learn that he was a bit of a country music fan. On occasion I'd tolerate it, but more often than not I'd roll my eyes and request a change of tune. But one evening he put a CD in our car and told me to give this artist a chance. Halfway into a certain song I admitted that I actually liked it.

Then, months later, we went to a Pat Green concert. When the song came on that slowly had become "our song" Mr. Seashell pulled me close. Pat sang, "And it came upon me wave on wave, You're the reason I'm still here, Am I the one you were sent to save?..." and he said in my ear, "You know it's true". In that moment I knew it was the song we had to dance to at our wedding.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

My "Night Off"

For the past several weeks, Mr. Fix-It and I have had opposite schedules. I work late on Mondays and Tuesdays, and he has class on Wednesdays. When I'm not home Mr. Fix-It will make himself dinner, do some household chores, do work/classwork, hit the gym, or take on a small project. Sometimes he'll sit on the sofa and relax, too.

I take a different approach to my alone time. I am explicitly clear that this is my evening to DO NOTHING. I totally indulge myself in all the things I enjoyed about being single. This includes:

...watching TV in bed while eating Potbelly's. Catching up on Bethenny and Pregnant in Heels. Eating Mac & Cheese out of the pot with a giant wooden spoon. Falling asleep at a ridiculous time like 8:30pm. Ignoring all dirty dishes and laundry. Writing a blog post. Aimlessly wandering the internet. Moseying home while I stop at random stores along my commute. Get a manicure. But mainly, curl up in bed early and watch tv.

Basically, I love Wednesdays. I relish in being completely carefree and lazy. But here's the thing: Mr. Fix-It doesn't get it AT ALL. Last week I was already asleep when he came home and he gave me the silent treatment Thursday morning before he left for work. He was annoyed that I don't do anything on Wednesday. Plus, he's just wired differently. Lounging around doesn't necessarily feel good to him. Mr. Fix-It feels best when he has accomplished something. It doesn't matter what the task is, he just wants something to show for his evening. And, admittedly, I blatantly ignored things around the condo that probably should have been done (dishes in the sink, overflowing laundry basket, finally preparing that chicken dish I'd been talking about making).

As much as I like the sense of accomplishment that comes from being productive, Wednesdays just fall in a different category. Plus, I'm being realistic: at some point we'll have kids and these kinds of opportunities will disappear. And Mr. Fix-Its Wednesday night class will be over sometime in June. My hopelessly lazy evenings are numbered.

What about you? Do you indulge yourself in your alone time?

Monday, May 23, 2011

Spring Travels

 Just dropping in for a quick Monday post to share some photos from a recent trip to Florida. We spent time with my Dad's side of the family and then went to Sea World to celebrate my sister's 25th!

Are you traveling this spring?

Thursday, May 19, 2011


We've all seen it. And if you're like me you've totally rolled your eyes.

What is it about a school-age child in a stroller that makes us batty? Supposedly a tumblr blog has sparked a great debate in the parenting world.  I, for one, stand firmly on the side of: WALK!

After seeing this blog I tried to put my finger on what exactly about older children in strollers makes me just plain mad. I think it ultimately speaks to what feels like an increasingly lazy American culture. We constantly hear about soaring child obesity rates and how kids aren't getting enough physical activity. And can't you just hear kid, "...but I don't wanna walk!"?

It's as if we know we don't get out enough, and when we finally do we still aren't doing it right. ABC News had a pediatrician weigh in on the issue. Dr. Jennifer Shu points out that pushing your child in a stroller beyond a certain age deprives them of developing strength and conditioning.

The other piece that takes me over the top is this sense that we can't say "no" to our kids anymore. I can't tell you how many kids I see in therapy because they're defiant, difficult, or just plain annoying (not the clinical term, of course). Let me tell you, an hour of therapy a week won't change what is going on in your family system. Are you guilty because you work too many hours? Fear that denying your child something will make them dislike you? Don't want to deal with a tantrum? Just plain exhausted? Teaching your kid that they can wear you down with whining is a precedent you'll have to manage repeatedly down the road. Save yourself now, parents! And let's all start walking a little more.

What's your take? Does this drive you nuts too?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

One Shell Of A Wedding! : Cocktails, Toasts, Dinner & Cake

We kicked off cocktail hour with champagne all around.

Our cocktail hour was exactly what we had hoped. The weather at Glen Manor House was ten degrees cooler than in the city (so, about 76) and our guests mingled, nibbled, and explored the gorgeous property. We spent a significant portion of cocktail hour taking photos, but also managed to have time to chat with guests and get a few bites of food. Great tip: The venue coordinator asked us in advance which hors d'oeuvres we wanted to try.  While we were greeting our guests a tray was brought to us so we could enjoy our time and also sneak in a nosh!

Monday, May 16, 2011

A Reward, Decor Update, and One Drink Too Many

Whenever we have people to our home I always like to inform them that they are seeing our condo and renovations, "The most complete they've ever been!" (I mean, duh, obviously.) Today, however, it is actually more true than ever.

Mr. Fix-It and I agreed that once our home renovations were truly "done" we would hire a cleaning service to come in and clean our condo from top to bottom. It would be a marker that we were done making dust, and a reward for all of our hard work. 

Today is that day. Wa-hoo!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Am I Wearing Pants?

Recently, I had a conversation with a colleage of mine. The topic of judging our fellow office-mates may or may not have come up. (Just keeping it real.) The conversation ended with, "I know! And she doesn't even wear pants!"

So, when I came across this awesome chart on the interwebs today, I just had to share.
Office-mate, this one is for you:


P.S. For those of you a little slow on the uptake (me): start from the center of the chart and work your way out.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

We're Coming To Steal Your Babies

...that is all.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Finishing Touches

Last time you saw our bookshelves they were empty. Like, boxes and boxes of books and trinkets were homeless. On Saturday it was time to get organized and clean out a bit. I was actually kind of excited to go through some old books (sorry Twilight and Jodi Picoult) and make a donation pile. There is something nice about having things that kind of represent literature on our shelves and not I'msingleandwanttoreadbooksaboutfindinglove a la "beach books". (But seriously, don't act like you haven't read "Something Borrowed" and Jennifer Weiner books, too.)

I tend to enjoy finding places for things, but on Saturday I just couldn't get it all to come together. So far everything looks just ok.

Yes, the speaker grills are still not in place.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Don't Doubt The Designer

When we first started renovating the kitchen Mr. Fix-It mentioned adding a crown molding to our cabinets. I told him (on more than one occasion) that I didn't really think it was necessary and that I worried the molding would be "too fussy" or "too non-crisp and modern". The short version of the story is that he thought we needed it anyway and went ahead and put it up when I wasn't home.

Before we touched our kitchen we had a floating cabinet to the left of the sink. Poor thing. So lonely. It was finished off with some little shelf things (which I thought were awful) but made it look less lost. I kept calling them our Country Kitchen cabinets.

Mr. Fix-It decided that creating a frame around the window (he called it the "window box") would make the lonely cabinet look more connected. I have to admit it helped make the area more cohesive.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

One Shell Of A Wedding! : All The Small Things

My absolute, absolute favorite Weddingbee posts are recaps, and specifically the wedding detail posts. I just adore the sweet, subtle, thoughtful things that make a wedding feel unique. Creating a vision for our wedding and then finding all the small things to make it come together was one of my favorite parts of the planning process.

First, way, way, way back when, I created a vision board. Originally wanting an ivory and gold wedding, it soon became clear that some touches of purple would liven things up. I posted this ages ago with the hope to recreate the vibe and feel of this board - not an exact literal translation.

As the look and feel started to come together I wasn't exactly sure what to call the style I was hoping to achieve. "Classic elegant romance", "Regal and romantic", "Sentimental"? One of the front runners for my recaps was "Happy Tears and Chandeliers". You get the idea, and I was going for something I couldn't quite name. Maybe you'll know the perfect description.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Our Sad Little Window

Back in college, I started decorating with bamboo. I'm not sure where I got the idea in my head that "bamboo is seriously awesome!" but I did, and I have had a vase with bamboo somewhere in my home ever since.

Each time we moved Mr. Fix-It would make a comment about me and my bamboo, and noting that it seemed to follow us everywhere. I made a strong stance about having living things in your living space, and argued that it was important for our mental health. (Seriously? I feel like a wacka-doo for that one). I washed our bamboo regularly (the leaves would sometimes get dusty), scrub the rocks at the bottom of the vase, and one time I trimmed the unruly roots which rendered my lovely stalks dead. That day I was really sad.

When we were putting our kitchen together, a vase of bamboo made it to the windowsill. It lived there for almost two years. I thought it looked really good. But looking back, I was clearly misinformed.

This is essentially how our kitchen looked before we started renovations. Bamboo living proudly on the windowsill with its friend the red candle.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Birthday Gifts Shouldn't Be This Much Work

When I came home from work on Friday I found Mr. Fix-It unloading our built-in shelves. Ugh. I knew what that meant.

First, Mr. Fix-It had been anxious to properly finish the built-ins he had created in December 2009. There were a few exposed nail holes, spots that needed touching up, and the whole unit needed a fresh coat of paint. We had been talking about getting this project done since we finished the kitchen, but frankly I was hoping we could procrastinate a little longer.