New Year’s Resolutions are my Jam!

Every year at this time I like to stop reflect and make some loose plans for the future. I also like looking back at each post to see what I accomplished and still need to work on.

Last year I really wanted a new job. That happened twice this past year and both were improvements. I’m ready to relax into my new position and stay for awhile. That’s the cool thing about nursing though, there’s always opportunities and it’s possible to find a job that’s a good fit. I finally got into psych nursing and I think this is my place. At least for awhile.

Last year I wanted to try a new hobby and I did. I took several photography classes and really learned to use my DSLR camera. I like it. I’m not super good at it yet but that part doesn’t matter. It’s enjoyable and that’s the part the counts.

Now to get to the point, resolutions for this year:

My favorite, constant challenge, to lose some weight. Cliche, I know, but also necessary.

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Next, to try new things. I really have enjoyed photography and now I want to try some more new hobbies. Maybe take a language. Maybe learn to sew or quilt. Maybe connect to resolution #1 and try some yoga.

Further, read more. We just put together our library and there are so many good books in there that I haven’t read yet. I definitely need to make more time to read.

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And, last but not least, start the next part of renovations. Maybe the bedroom, probably the basement but either way it needs to begin again.

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Home Renovations Continue: Things are finally coming together

After being stuck in the basement for a short duration, we kicked up the home renovations up a notch. The floors turned out great.

 

Next I began to finish the extra bedroom where I had taken down the chair rail.  The vision was to turn it into a bit of a library. So fresh paint, new light fixtures, and fancy new bookshelves went in.

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All outlets were replaced

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New and pretty!

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New bookshelves from our local historical society who was giving them away for free!

Next the living room was tackled.

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Supervising the progress

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Starting to cut in

Next to do was getting the trim up. We also decided to replace light fixtures. Oh, so much progress yet so much more to go.

 

 

Banned to the Basement: Home Renovations, part whatever

Progress is being made. Right now someone is sanding and refinishing my hardwood floors. Floors someone hid under carpet and peel & stick vinyl. In the past week we managed to peel up that vinyl and mostly remove the adhesive, paint a room, and move our entire living room.

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Peeling with a heat gun and a scraper

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All the vinyl is up just adhesive left

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The end product. We cleaned as best we could with mineral spirits

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Just beginning and a little freaked out I chose such a dark color

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1st coat and it was blotchy with the former chair rail clearly visible. eek!

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End product. Everything covered up and evened out. Whew!

We’re cruising along but, right now, I’m stuck. Stuck in the partially finished basement with my boyfriend and three cats. And those cats did not go easy.

I spent the morning, before my first cup of coffee, chasing one cat around the house after he got loose when I tried to close him in the basement. He is freaked out very easily and upon figuring out we were trying to sequester him he jumped a baby gate and plowed through what I thought was a closed door. It was a process but he is safely hiding under a couch in the basement. Finally.

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While one is hiding the other 2 cats want to be where the action is 

My living room floor is being worked on which means I can’t get anywhere in my house. Not the full bathroom (yes, thankfully, we have a half bath in the basement), or the bedroom, or my office. This is why everyone is stuck in the basement. I can get into the kitchen but because there is not a door to the basement the area is being blocked by two the of cheapest baby gates I could find. Cheap baby gate means pain in the ass to use! So I’m not going through them unless expressly necessary. But, it’s not terrible. We have a tv and couch down here. Plus a twin air mattress. And more reading material than I could possibly finish. It would almost be like a vacation if the sound of sanding wasn’t so distracting. After all there’s not much I can do down here.

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Tomorrow I go back to work and hopefully the floor project will wrap up. By Thursday evening I’m hoping to actually be able to walk on it and get to the shower & bedroom. By Friday I should be able to put furniture back where it belongs and start organizing my house again…at least a little. I still have a living room to paint!

 

 

Spackling dust, the new dry shampoo

The home renovations continue. Those lazy bastards (aka the former home owners) have struck again. I was prepping our extra room for painting. Patching where I removed the chair rail, sanding, and re-patching.

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That’s not blurry, it’s dust floating in the air. What a mess!!

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My post sanding look. Old chemistry goggles are good for something!

Finally I was ready for one last wall and ceiling wash. I noticed as I was washing the ceiling that there were TWO colors up there. Very similar colors so I never noticed before but with my nose pressed up there to wash, it was clear, the lazy bastards didn’t bother to cut in when they painted. They just rolled to about 6 inches from the wall and stopped. I shouldn’t be surprised anymore but it still makes me roll my eyes.

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We also are removing carpet in our living room. The hardwood floors will be sanded and refinished next week. Who covers hardwood with shitty carpet in the first place?! However, as we removed, we found another surprise.

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We hadn’t swept yet. So much dirt under carpet!

Someone had stuck peel and stick vinyl flooring over the hardwood to create an “entry way.” It’s awful. Today’s project is going to be trying to peel it all up. That’ll be a good time, I’m sure.

At least we have supervisors who keep their opinion to themselves.

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Keeping an eye on the progress

Quick Little Baby Granny Square

I started a new job in February. With that came 3 pregnant bosses! They are all lovely ladies and it seemed like a good excuse to pick up the crochet hook again. Handmade gifts always go over really well. And those of you who crochet under how quickly a simple baby blanket can be whipped up. I finished this blanket first.

It was a nice slightly thicker wool yarn and I liked the colors. Simple, basic granny square pattern. I just alternated colors as I wanted.

I have a second baby blanket in the works. To be honest, I’ve been working on it for a few years. I got tired of the pattern and shoved in the closet where it sat for, well, a long time! But it’s a cute pattern and now I’m finally going to finish it! Here’s the work in progress:

And a cat. Because when you pull out the yarn the cats show up. 

The pattern can be found here. I have to complete the blanket this month to get it to it’s intended owner! Wish me luck.

Humane Society Cat Cafe

I have previously posted photos of my own cats. Last week I had a day off with some friends and we decided to check out the Huron Valley Humane Society’s Cat Cafe, Tiny Lions. You pay to spend time with shelter cats and drink a coffee. It’s my kind of place. I took my camera just for fun too. And all the cats are adoptable. They do pretty well adopting cats out from the location with 2-3+ finding homes each week, usually older cats as well. These are some of the cats we spent some time with.

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I Like Deadlines

Well, actually, I need deadlines. I’m good if there’s an impending….something. I was listening to the Jordan Harbinger podcast and he had on Gretchen Rubin who talked about “The Four Tendencies…” which is about the origin of motivation. She describes which, external or internal, motivations prompt action depending on the person. I do take a lot of this research with a grain of salt, however, it did give me some insight when it comes to following through or, as the case may be, lack of following through. After listening, I noticed that I respond well to external motivation. I do well in school, there are deadlines, and consequences for missing them. I’m productive with work stuff because, again, there are outside influences telling me when something has to be done. I’m not nearly as good when the motivation needs to come from me. I need a push to get the ball rolling. I’m trying to use this knowledge to create motivation for myself. If I can create deadlines that actually mean something maybe I’ll actually get some shit done!

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I slowly have started to put this in action. When I decided to take up photography I knew I wanted to take a class to learn the camera better. After the first class I continued because I liked having photography homework. Not only did it make me try new techniques, but it also gave me a deadline. It’s not that I don’t take photos without the class but I enjoyed being “forced” to make time for my hobby.

I have been renovating my house FOREVER. This is partly due to time constraints and partly due to simply putting it off. In an effort to play to my strengths and motive myself I scheduled the floor guy in advance. (I’m getting my hardwood floors sanded and refinished.) Now, I have a month to pull up carpet and repaint two rooms, one being the main living area. It’s completely doable and with that deadline fast approaching I’m feeling more pressure to get stuff accomplished.

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Now I just need to figure ways to apply this to other areas of my life….like cooking, blogging, and exercise!