Wednesday, November 28, 2012

When the title of "Bonehead" falls on you

One of my more frequent sayings in my house is "THIS is why I can't have nice things".  My kids'll confirm this.  And that statement is usually directed at them.  Because they carelessly throw stuff around the house, breaking items or putting marks on walls and the like.  Because they don't typically think before they start on a project, like painting their fingernails...on my solid cherry dining room table and spilling the remover and not telling me until I go to remove the table cloth only to find, well, let me just say it wasn't a pretty formal cherry dining room table anymore.  They're old enough now that they SHOULD think through the consequences (or POSSIBLE ONES) of their actions and take all precautions to ensure the consequences don't happen (and most assuredly, not to my stuff).

It was I, however, that recently added to my collection of "no longer nice things" by setting a dish from the microwave on my fairly new table.  And the result of my bonehead move?  A table with a scorched finish:
Nice huh?  THIS is why I can't have nice things.  So today, I decided to flip the table around so that you wouldn't see the scorched varnish right off the bat and I had to move my computer to do so. And I said to myself I said..."Self...maybe you can google it and see if there is some kind of fix out there on the interwebs".  So I did.  Specifically, I googled "how to remove milk white varnish stain from wood".  I figured might as well be as specific as I can, right?  And lo and behold the FIRST website to pop up was titled  "DIY: How to remove white heat stains from wood table"  Feel free to check out the link.  I was a tad skeptical that one would remove heat stains with HEAT, but I figured I had nothing to lose and since there was an additional white stain, but much smaller, I'd do a test run with that and see if it worked.

5 minutes later, voila:
This does not make me a be all know all about removing stains from wood.  I'm sure that such an operation CAN be more damaging than the original stain, as stated on the DIY website, but this was a risk that paid off for me. Is it perfect?  No.  The table isn't perfect either, mostly because of my kids.

Which is why I can't have nice things. ;-)

Monday, November 19, 2012


My kids are constantly lamenting my propensity for "creeping".  That's what kids call it.  I  call it tactful surveillance from a distanceI ABSOLUTELY want to know what my kids are doing with whom and where and sometimes, clicking around the internet at sites they frequent gives me just enough information to either allay my concerns, or to throw up a red flag for further investigation.  And honestly, I can't recall any red flags.  It also gives me the opportunity to catch a glimpse of subtle things they've said in conversations that have no frame of reference.

This type of surveillance usually comes from facebook, but instagram and pinterest are also good sites for disseminating information.  

I just need to remember...Karma.  And I see her in action frequently.  MORE frequently since the advent of "cookies".  If you don't know what "cookies" are (besides those little morsels of goodness that are hard to resist and usually take up residence on your thighs, and you can find melt in your mouth versions here and here and here oh, and here and here.  See, no need for a cook book), the simplist version of explaining it is they are a  text file that is set on your computer by a website.  So, let's say you were looking for new appliances online (just SAYIN'...not BUYIN'...yet).  And you went to several different websites.  Well, that information would be stored on your computer by the websites. big deal right?  This should be something "invisible" to you, right?  But did you ever notice how you'll be online and notice that ads come up that COINCIDENTALLY relate to what you have recently looked at.

THAT is thanks to cookies.  I, however, call it creeping.  Because it is very similar to what I do with my kids.  It is someone else looking at what interests me, but taking it a step further and letting me know (it may be subtle for some) that they KNOW what I'm looking at.  Now, this can also be a good tool when tracking what kids are doing (although, I suspect that many are smart enough to delete their cookies so that they aren't as easily tracked, either by you or websites), but I find it a tad unnerving to be reading updates on facebook and see ads for the last 3 sites I have previously visited come up in the advertising bars of facebook.  I should delete the temporary cookies but on occasion I DO stumble upon a site that I don't immediately bookmark and want to get back to it and it IS a reminder.

Still, it IS creepy who's watching you.  Or it should be.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Twenty Days

My husband and I celebrated our 20th anniversary on Oct 30th.  It was a Tuesday and we went to dinner with friends.  No huge fanfare.  We had exchanged gifts earlier in the day, with him giving me a card informing me that I had 20 days of gifts coming.  The card was gift one.  There were supposed to be 19 to follow.

I have to tell you, he has very much surprised me.  He set his own monitary limits on the gifts and he has worked diligently to stay within those limits while considering what I might want/need.  OH, OK, he's thrown in a gift here and there to suit HIS needs too (see gift 2 and note that it was the first one to be given...that was by design).

And he hasn't stayed completely on track.  If you include the card (which he said was included), I should have 13 gifts.  I'm on 10 but I haven't received today's gift.  Yet.  He DID warn me that he doesn't think he  can make it to the full 20 (whether that means monitarily or idea wise, I'm not sure) but my oldest daughter scolded him saying he can't NOT make it.  So we'll see what the next 10 days hold. I DO know that there is at least one more coming my way. Either way, he has already exceeded my expectations.

As of today, I have received: 1) a card 2) a long handled stirring spoon (typically, I'd just use a table knife) 3) a bar of Godiva chocolate in white chocolate tiramisu 4) a small bag of Caribou coffee 5) an umbrella 6) a single shot flask key ring 7) a box of 12 Yankee Candle Tea lights 8) a bag of chocolate covered pomegranates 9) a Christmas ornament to hang from my dining room chandelier and 10) a pair of earrings.

I'll be honest and say he has really impressed me.  Not with the caliber of the gifts although they've all been lovely (and I've had to hide the chocolate from my girls), but with actually thinking outside the box.  Showing a little ingenuity.  I don't NEED big expensive gifts.  If we had the money, sure they'd be nice, but the fact that he has continued to the half way point and done a good job is enough for me to say that these 20 long drawn out soul shattering years have been worth it.

So, KUDOS Sparky!  Glad to know you still have it in you.  Although, I'm not sure if you'll EVER top that one gift.  Way back when we were dating. That one might just go down in history as my all time favorite.

Want to know what it was?  HA!  Not.A.Chance. ;-)