About These Things

About getting older:

  • I finally understand the need for Sunday afternoon naps.
  • I finally take Sunday afternoon naps.
  • There was this other thing that I thought of in the car on my drive to work but I can’t remember what it is now.
  • But it was awesome and eloquent, I remember that.
  • My friend, who is 10 years older than me, has given me a birthday present.
  • My birthday is in June.
  • Maybe I should open my present now in case I don’t make it to June.

About spiders:

  • My home is spider mecca.
  • I am a spider magnet.
  • I am thinking of changing my name to Miss Muffet.
  • He Man never spots the spiders.
  • Meanwhile a dream catcher scared the crap out of me on the weekend on account of it being spider coloured.
  • He Man insists on capturing the spiders and setting them free outside.
  • If it were up to me they would die but as I am too scared to get close enough to give them a good whack with a shoe they get to live.

About World of Warcraft:

  • My addiction is back in full swing.
  • Heck I am even reading the Warcraft Archive.
  • I kill A LOT of spiders in WoW.
  • Even when I don’t have a quest to do so.
  • Having a place to go where death is not permanent, where I am a healer, where I am strong and powerful, where I make a difference – this place makes everything else bearable.

Face Off

I threatened, I promised, I hoped and finally I did.

I quit Facebook.

It was something that I have wanted to do for the longest time and now, with a little nudge from He Man, it is done.

Like many I joined because I was curious. And in the beginning it was fun. I reconnected with an old friend and I even got to raise a dragon. But really it was all fake (especially the dragon, which was most disappointing). These friends on line who couldn’t spare me time for a cuppa and a chat off line. The requests to be part of their circle of “bestest friends eva” when the only reason I accepted their friend request (or they mine) is because Facebook is really all about who has the most “friends”.

And now, no more. Instead tonight I will spend my time with real people; talking with real people, laughing with real people, having a good time with real people.

And I am really looking forward to it.

Things to Do While You Wait for Paint to Dry

I have been following Young House Love for quite some time. I am always impressed and inspired by the little and big things that John and Shelly do that slowly transform their house into their home. And since we moved into our own house just over a year ago, I have wanted to do the same.

I have big plans for the house. Actually it’s more like grand day dreams. Since we moved in we’ve done exactly zero home improvements and our décor style has been decidedly “this is what we moved in with and we haven’t been bothered to do, try or buy anything else”. I mean I would love to redo the master bathroom, as in totally rip out everything and start again but there really isn’t any kind of budget for doing that.

And I totally suck as the small things. For instance, I have decided that we really need more lighting in the lounge so last weekend I went shopping. I found myself in Mr Price trying to decide between a floor lamp versus a table lamp and table. When I did the quick mental arithmetic and realized that both options cost about the same, I got paralysed by indecision hence I still cannot curl up on the couch in the evenings and read a book.

But perhaps things are about to change.

Sometime last year He-Man’s Grampa had to move into an old age home so some of his possessions were given to his children and grandchildren. What came our way was this:

The "Before"

Actually we had a choice between two paintings and while I preferred the other one (purely from a subject matter point of view) this one is that one that made He-Man most think of Grampa.

The painting has hung in our bedroom on a nail that was left here by the previous owner and while I have come to appreciate the painting, I hated the frame. It was chipped and peeling and just way too much beige. I planned to get it reframed, hoping that the good and talented folk at the framing place would have some ideas of what to do to make more of the painting, but I just haven’t gotten round to it.

Then yesterday, inspiration struck. I was getting ready for the day (we were supposed to be attending a family picnic but He-Man was not feeling well) when it occurred to me that I could repaint the frame. And even better, I figured out what colours to go with. I impressed myself.

So, armed with some cash from He-Man’s wallet and his permission to repaint the frame I set off for Mica for some supplies.

He-Man helped me to remove the painting from the frame and then I got to painting. Then I waited for paint to dry. Then I painted again. Then I waited some more.

Something I did yesterday (while I waited for the paint to dry) was to finally organize my home décor ideas flip file. I made a pretty cover and created pages for each room in the house. Then I sorted out the few pictures I have saved and put them with the relevant rooms. Not a big deal but simply sorting that out helped to get new ideas flowing.

Then I painted and waited some more.

And herewith the results:

The "After"

Not perfect and I am sure when my mom gets to see this she will wrinkle her nose ever so slightly in the way she does when she notices that it’s not perfect. It was harder to do then I thought it would be Mom, I tried.

But boy am I thrilled that I actually did it. I took a first step in doing something definitive in the décor department that worked out pretty well.

The other thing that worked out pretty well was laundry, because when you’re waiting for paint to dry, you can get a lot of laundry done.

PS – I realise that photographically speaking, the’before’ photo looks better – as in it’s a better photograph. I blame the photographer.

Oh Baby

Even before I started blogging again, this subject was a post in the making. And I’ve been trying to write it for a very long time.

To propagate or not to propagate*, for me right now that is the question. I finally have the home I’ve always dreamed of and I have found the right person to share it with. It took a lot longer than I thought it would to get to this point but I am grateful that I have finally arrived.

However, with me being nearly 37 and him having his own potential fertility impacting issue it may already be too late for us to make this decision; it may have already been made for us. But we don’t know that, won’t know that until we make the decision to give it a try.

But say we do give it a try and we have no success?

I know I don’t what endless rounds of fertility treatments because I become obsessed with having a baby. It’s wonderful that there are treatments and options out there for people who want to pursue this and can afford to do so. We can’t. We can’t afford to get ourselves into a lot of debt for something that is not guaranteed and that, even if it does succeed, won’t live up to the fantasy we’ve created.

But say we do give it a try and we do have success?

I have these little fantasies in my head, short but detailed daydreams of precise moments of my potential child’s life – Dad and Junior watching Star Wars together as Dad passes on his geeky passions; Mom reading Lord of the Rings to Junior before bedtime and having a little voice begging for just one page more please mommy. There are more moments, in my head, many more. And chances are that some of them at least will come to pass in some shape or form. The rest will be something else entirely.

And it is that something else, that total unknown that is the most frightening.

The idea of a little someone who is a little bit of me and a little bit of him and a whole lot of original is a compelling one but there is no way to prepare for this. There is no way of knowing how well or how awful this could turn out. And once a brand new human being is delivered into your arms there is no undo option.

Possibly I had some naïve notion, when I started drafting this post in my head a long time ago, that writing about it would present the solution. It didn’t.

And the internet is no help either.

Or maybe it is.

Whenever you’re called on to make up your mind,

And you’re hampered by not having any,

The simplest way to solve the dilemma you’ll find,

Is simply by flipping a penny.

No, not so that chance shall decide the affair,

As you’re passively standing there moping.

But as soon as the penny is up in the air,

You’ll suddenly know what you are hoping.

Piet Hein 

* procreate is probably the more correct word but propagate invokes a more apt image, at least in my head

I like to Move It, Move It

All Gamed Out Mom

Apart from my box of Cadbury’s Milk Tray (which is the only gift I ever ask for, and expect to get) I was also given two PS3 move controllers and the game Kung Fu Rider for Christmas. My reaction to the chocolates was YESSSS!!!! My reaction to the PS3 stuff was “eh nice, uh thanks”.

Yes, I was a little disappointed. Yes, I was an ungrateful cow.

It took a while for me to get over my distinct lack of enthusiasm. In fact he* had to set up everything and he was the first one to actually use any of it.

And he was having fun doing it.

And I was a little jealous. So I decided to stop indulging my inner sulky five-year-old and joined in.

Fun was had by all. The End. Well not quite. We went out shopping this morning for games, specifically Sports Champions because I was getting so good at the demo table tennis game (that came with the motion controller) that I was winning whilst playing left-handed**.

And I also seem to have found, finally, a first person shooter (The Shoot) that I like playing.

With the constant cloudy and rainy days that have made up the majority of our holiday (we last used the pool on Christmas day) we’ve been gaming a lot which entails sitting on our butts and consolidating all our holiday weight gain in our asses***. So now I get to game and get physical and all this moving around makes me feel really good.

I didn’t realize that I was actually starting to feel a little, I was going to say claustrophobic (because of being trapped in the house all day) but really the correct word is depressed. Who knew that no sunshine and sitting around all day could make one depressed?

I’ve also discovered the added benefit of trash talking my table tennis opponents without fear that they’ll come round to my side of the table and beat the crap out of me. This is possibly more fun than actually winning the matches.

We have one week of holiday left. I realise that the moment we go back to work glorious sunny weather will return to these parts. But that’s okay. My garden can enjoy the thorough watering and I’ll enjoy practicing headshots. Because gaming doesn’t make people violent, lack of an internet connection does.

* He needs a blog pseudonym. I am tempted to capitalize the H in He so that he feels more important and so that you will know that I am talking about him (him = man I love and live with) and not some other male person. But that doesn’t sound distinct enough; it doesn’t POP. Sigh. Will have to ask him what he wants to be called on this here blog. But he should know, up front, that Captain Underpants is out.

** My next step was to try the tw0 player option and play against myself. That was going to be oh so awesome because I’d always win.

*** When I say ‘we’ I really mean ‘me’. I don’t hate him because he is skinny but I am mightily envious.

Her Dilatoriness

Folks at work keeping asking me how the packing is going. When I admit that I haven’t started yet they are shocked. TracyL not organised? Say it ain’t so. And it is a bit of a shock, even to me because I generally am an organised person and I loathe leaving things to the last minute.

I was thinking about this when I was getting ready for bed just now, wondering why I just can’t get myself into gear and packing already. I thought back to all other times I have moved house before, how I got things cleared out and packed with plenty of time to spare. Then it hit me, all those other times I could not wait to get the hell out of there.

The same should be true this time.

This place was only supposed to be temporary. When I moved in here I had no idea what my future held but with a 6 month lease it was certain to hold another move. Instead here I am 29 months later and 9 days away from moving into my house, the one I wanted more than anything and the empty boxes are, well, still empty.

When I was facing divorce and an uncertain future I was terrified that I would not be able to survive on my own. I remember, vividly, googling “living in my car” (and reading nearly every link) because I was convinced that there was just no way I would be able to pay rent, eat and have enough money to get myself to work and back (so I could earn money to pay rent and eat).

But I did it, I made it. I survived. And instead of the desperate struggle for survival that I thought it was going to be, I’ve actually come out ahead. From about May last year I’ve been debt free. I saved money, lots of it. And even after paying the lawyers fees and transfer duties for our house, I still have money in the bank.

(I don’t know how to write that last sentence so that it doesn’t sound like I am bragging. It is not my intention. Certainly there were many times when payday could not arrive fast enough and most days I was convinced that it would never get better. I eventually borrowed money from my parents to pay off my credit card, then had to pay my parents back. It took a long time to do that. Then it was saving like a person possessed, sacrificing the little nice-to-have’s in order to get the deposit and fees together for our house. Two and a half years ago, I did not think I could do any of this.)

It’s been here, in this little two bedroom place (that I took because I could afford the rent and it had an upstairs and downstairs which I thought was terribly larny) where I have really gained my independence, stood on my own two feet, set a goal and reached it finally and made me proud of me.

Understandable then that I am just a tad afraid (read shit scared) of moving away from this, my bastion of independence. We’re a team now, we’ve made a commitment to each other. Neither of us can do this independently. We need one another.

We get the keys on Sunday.