Upheaval of every kind

Everything is closing or closed. The markets are scary looking ghostly places with empty shelves. There was so little traffic this morning I felt a chill. This was slower than a holiday. It truly seemed post-apocalyptic in a way. 50, no, only 10 people are allowed to congregate now! But, what about business?

Tomorrow I get to work from home, but maybe not Wednesday or Thursday. I’ve already scheduled off Friday. All of the managers are confused and have no idea how to handle this or what to do. The day shift at the shop has 100 people working in it. Will we have to close? We have measures in place to stop people getting in (sort of), but what about those already inside? My office is in a different building up a slight hill from the main shop, but I can’t go to the main building for meetings: A) because I’ve recently been ill and B) I’d scare the bloody hell out of anyone down there who heard me coughing. People are skittish now and on edge.

Even our home life has been thrown into disarray.

coffee table dinner

Behold, our dining room table for the past three days. It’s our coffee table.

We were notified our new cabinet doors would be installed March 17th, so we only had this past weekend to accomplish one thing: paint the cabinets. Since we are not getting a full remodel – only new doors and some drawers put in – we are responsible for making sure the kitchen is ready. Saturday my recovering ass was put to work. Z did the majority of the heavy lifting by sanding all of the cabinets and painting the upper areas. My job was to help with a little prep (taping, wiping things down) and sitting on the floor to paint the lower cabinets. That little bit of exertion wiped me out and I slept better than I had all week. Sunday I did a thorough cleaning of the kitchen, which had me utterly exhausted by night. The cabinet company emailed customers today saying they will honor their appointments – unless the people don’t want them coming into their houses. We want them to come! We want our new doors so we can have our house back in order!


This is currently our kitchen. We put some things back in for ease of use for the past 48 hours, but all of this needs to cleared out because the installer comes tomorrow from 8-9 am. The drawer on the right side of the photo is the old, yellow-ish color. We put the utensil drawer back in temporarily.

mock kitchen

This is our dining room where everything in the kitchen is being held. It’s been strange to look at a cabinet and know something should be there, but when I need a spice or dish I then have to stop and remember where I placed everything in the dining room.


All of the glassware is on the bureau, which I realized later was a bad idea. Bento loves that window sill and even though it’s covered, he’s found a way to jump his big butt up there and then carefully jump down. Whenever he does the glasses jingle and I’m stressed out waiting to hear them crash to the floor. Since our floors are old and creaky and uneven, even walking past this room makes all of the glasses jingle.


Tomorrow I work from home, but the installer also comes. But I have a lot work to get done because today felt like a bust just trying to figure out what to do about everything and hear from the managers. But I know I’ll be distracted by the installer and need to give input for the hardware we bought for the new doors. But what about keeping Bento and Yuki out of the kitchen?

I went to the store to buy onions and a loaf of baked bread to have with chili I made tonight. I couldn’t help myself when I saw these roses. I needed something cheerful and calming. I also bought Z a dark chocolate Lindt bunny and bought myself a cute large iced bunny cookie.

It’s the little things right now.

Year of the house


This is my new desk. For the time being I’m using an extra dining room table chair since the ottoman I was using before was too short. I actually like the dining room chair since it forces me to correct my posture. I know most computer chairs are ergonomic to help posture in general, but I kinda think that’s the lazy way to go about it when you have something doing the work for you. Granted, I don’t sit at my desk for hours at a time so for now, this simple straight back chair works fine for me. It’s the right height and I feel conscious of my posture and when I get tired I get up, which usually means it’s time to step away from the computer.

So one thing that’s blatantly obvious to me in the photo above is how much we need new flooring (and how I need to better handle the wiring situ behind my desk). It is on the list of Things To Do this year:

  • New countertops (we just got them last Friday. I came home from the bar after seeing a coworker off to a new job and was confused when I noticed our kitchen looked… different. It confused the crap out of me and Z just laughed. He kept it secret that he’d taken the day off work to be home for the installers. I thought we were still a week away from getting it done.)
  • Update and repaint cabinets because the new countertops make them look horribly outdated- we have our first estimate tomorrow after work.
  • Update floors – the carpet paste that’s always existed in my study and the unfinished floor trim have been tolerated long enough. It’s time to get estimates and make things more US now.
  • New front door – because ours is old, warped and the trim was broken by the movers when we bought the house 4 years ago…
  • Bathroom upgrade – most likely will not happen this year due to budget reasons, but I can’t wait to get rid of the salmon and black trim tiling in there and get a glass shower door. I fight with the shower curtain every. single. day. because we leave the door open since we don’t have a proper vent and opening the window doesn’t always help with alleviating the steam. I’m thinking of entirely nixing the tub and just doing a walk-in shower. I never take baths and due to the limited space I’d rather have a larger shower.

Today was ridiculously warm for January. Both Saturday and Sunday were 65+ degrees. While we cleaned we had the windows open throughout the whole house to air it out. It felt very odd to be doing this when normally there would be snow. I did enjoy taking a long walk this afternoon and not having to bundle up so much.

Storms… and more storms

Z took both of these photos for me. He took 7 shots waiting for Yuki to get into frame with me for Monday’s outfit.

For today, I wore my Everlane men’s Japanese oxford shirt. I don’t think they have them anymore on the site (unless you just buy the men’s one, which is still there because I think it’s the same thing), but it was touted as the women’s version of a men’s shirt, but… Japanese style? I don’t get it. Anyway, the fabric is very thick and perfect for wearing in cool weather. It would be way too hot to wear in the summer outdoors due to the thick cotton, but that’s exactly why I like it. For a light colored shirt, it’s totally opaque. That’s another reason why I’ve strayed away from white shirts, I hate how sheer most of them are – even solid cotton ones. This does have a grey stripe in it so it’s not totally white, but it’s the lightest colored button down shirt I own. The solid white one I ordered is in this same fabric and I think it’s the only way I could tolerate a white shirt – it feels sturdy and even if I do get a little make up on it, I think I could scrub it out because the weave of this shirt feels like it could take a beating. I also like that it’s not the light, crisp cotton. I could iron this shirt and make it look a little neater, but it looks slightly better crumpled, in the same way that linen looks better after being worn a bit.

So, to rewind a bit – we’ve been having a shit week – since the storm hit last Wednesday.

Wednesday: A foot of snow and a branch punctures a hole in our garage roof.
Thursday: I find out at work that even with a two week extension, only 1 out of 6 orders will be shipped on time to the client next week and I find out we are running a week and a half behind schedule. Cue my panic attack and about to lose my shit while waiting for slow ass GM to “get me answers” (which he never did). While driving home I was at a red light and my car suddenly starts violently shaking and making a strange squeaking sound like some animal is trapped in the engine.
Friday: I drive husband’s car to work (his beater car, not the Mustang) and he stays home to deal with insurance adjuster/ roofing /landscape/ garage door contractors and schedule my car appointment.
Saturday: 7 fucking am in the morning there’s knocking on our door and the tree company is there to take the branch down from the roof. At noon some contractor who works with the tree company showed up with his son to put a tarp on our roof. Both Z and I were exhausted the whole day.
Sunday: We relaxed, finally.
Monday: Drive my scary loud car to work. I’m running all around the shop floor, busting balls left, right and center to get up to 4 orders ready to ship for Friday. I’m still pissed it won’t be all six because technically it should, but there’s nothing I can do about that now. Drop my car off at the dealership for some known recall issues and to find out what the heck is going on with the engine.
Today: Z stays home again because I have his car and the Mustang was still trapped in the garage until around noon when the garage door company came and fixed it. I’m still busting balls at work and following the slower orders like a hawk. I got text updates from Z about the garage door being fixed and the dealership being a bunch of jerks about my car. Z asks to speak to another tech, who realized what the problem is, confirms it (which btw, is a problem my husband looked up because he’s a car geek and totally knew what the diagnosis was going to be before we even took it in), calls Z back and yep… I’m getting a new engine. It’s exactly what we knew the problem would be due to the symptoms being exactly as described: from 2012 – 2014 there was a known issue with engines put in Elantras that basically caused them to not function properly and eat themselves. Metal would break off in the engine due to bad bearings and other bad parts and metal would gather in the engine while running and cause them to break down entirely. Mine is a 2013 so it’s firmly in that engine problem time period. Luckily, I am still under warranty and sometime tomorrow the warranty work and my loaner should be approved by Hyundai.

I’ve no idea how long it’s going to take to fix my car, but at least I’m getting a loaner (I think? I hope. I don’t have that coverage with my insurance, but since this is a known issue – although not recalled – maybe they just do it as a courtesy).

All of this in time for… another snow storm to show up next week AND while we have visitors from our biggest client. Plus boss and others are going to another conference next week so I will be the only one in Business Development in house. AND I need to continuously be on top of ALL the upcoming orders for my client because of the current delay, which will cause a ripple effect of lateness (unless I tear their balls off entirely) with subsequent orders. I was trying to avoid all of this from the beginning, hence why I got the extensions, yada yada, same shit different day….


Tonight Z and I said “fuck it” to all this crap and drove to the city to our favorite ramen restaurant in Chinatown. There is nothing more comforting to me than a big bowl of hot, super flavorful tonkotsu broth, melt-in-your-mouth chunky pork belly slices, fat egg noodles and soy sauce seasoned soft boiled eggs on a cold night. The restaurant we go to is the most popular one in the city, Terakawa. At 7 pm on Tuesday night there was a line out the door and a 30 minute wait – that’s how good it is. It’s a tiny restaurant where everyone bumps into each other and pack in like sardines at tiny tables with tiny stools. It’s loud and hot and you have to yell to make the person sitting across from you hear you, but it smells delicious from the second you walk in and it always makes me smile to hear the staff behind the tiny bar counter loudly yell out, “rasshai!” to everyone who walks in the door. [ Irasshai いらっしゃい or rasshai – more rough version –  means “welcome, come on in” in Japanese (very informally) and is commonly heard in restaurants or retail where the staff are super friendly and casual.]

Afterwards, we waddled around Chinatown with our bellies full of broth and hit up a few of the bakeries to find treats to take home. We settled on chocolate mousse slices and I got a strawberry pastry for tomorrow. I also got a charshu onigiri from the restaurant because it’s the ultimate comfort food of seasoned pork (charshu) in a seasoned rice ball wrapped in nori and I’ll need it for work tomorrow.


While I was stuck at home during the massive snow storm yesterday, I thought to myself: this would be a good day to buy those pants I want from PdC. I’m still nervous about buying something so expensive, but at the same time I know I can afford it and I do want them (along with three other items I found on sale).

So as I lingered on the site, after pacing around the house a bit, I sat down to put it in cart. Now.


Ok. Right now.


Me: What was that?
Z: I think a tree branch fell…. on the garage.
Me: *runs to window and sees all sorts of tree debris in yard*
Z: Come up here and look.

I went upstairs because the guest room window looks down on the garage roof and sure enough a large branch fell down, broke and was pinning down an electrical wire.

Z went outside to check the garage, but the garage door wouldn’t open over a foot off the ground. He looked in the windows and the branch punctured a hole in the roof and offset the garage door mechanism. The car (new Mustang) and his motorcycle seem to be fine. What worried us the most was the electrical wire being pinned down because it was the one that went from the pole at the far corner of our yard directly to our house.

Z: immediately calls insurance company.
Me: immediately calls electrical company.
Z: calls roofing companies and his dad, who is the VP of a construction company.

We couldn’t do anything about it at all because it was still snowing heavily and we had no way of safely getting on the roof to take the branch down. I don’t even think Z could’ve moved it if he had been able to get up there. The branch was large and broke into two pieces when it hit the garage. One part pinned the wire and hung off that and half on one side of the roof and the other part of the branch that was bigger punctured the other side of the roof.

We made whatever calls we could and just had to hope for the best. All companies we called about roofing and garage doors were closed and the electrical company has ten million other people to deal with – not one person whose electricity hasn’t gone out….yet. But hey, they added it to their service calls that they’ll get to…eventually. I wasn’t expecting much at all but at least the service center woman was really nice. I know they are still dealing with fallout from the storm that hit last Friday. Some people still didn’t have electricity and then this storm hit.

So I won’t be buying the pants just yet because we need to know how bad the damage is for all of this first. Our deductible isn’t too high so that’s one good thing so far. Also, after Z shoveled the driveway for the third time he ended up talking to our neighbor (also shoveling) whose yard the tree is technically in. I had immediately thought: hmmm, their tree our damage… but I wasn’t going to be a jerk about it. Z came in and said our neighbor was more than willing to call his insurance company since the tree is in his yard and he felt slightly responsible. The tree is old and he was planning on having it looked at this spring to be trimmed or removed completely. The canopy of the tree mostly hangs over our property. It would be really nice if our neighbor put it on his insurance claim because we actually just got notice our rates lowered recently. However, this might bump the rates back up. Z mentioned that if they decide on removing the tree, we could help out a little because it is very expensive.

So while we survived the storm, we didn’t come out of it completely unscathed.

If I were superstitious I would say I was being told not to buy those pants, but I don’t get spooked that easily. It’s simply an emergency situation that will have some financial consequences happened and I’ll need to wait a little longer. Technically, I can totally still buy the pants no problem, but I want to know what the costs for fixing the roof and the garage door will be first.

Picture day


Current conditions: snowy. There’s around 4 inches on the ground already and we are expected to get another 8 throughout the day/night. Roads are… passable, but barely and won’t be for much longer when the brunt of the storm hits.

This is what I’m wearing right now and what I usually look like on the weekends when I don’t go out. Tee is from Grand Teton Nat’l Park and it’s 8 years old. This shirt is the most comfortable tee I own and I will wear it until it dies a holey, threadbare death. I usually just wear it to bed, but some days I do wear it out in warmer weather. It used to have pit stains but after a solid day soaking in oxyclean I managed to get them out. Sweatpants are also from GTNP and are 3 years old. Hoodie is from Target and is probably almost 8 years old. Not shown – epic bedhead.

Michelle asked to see photos of the furniture here a while back and it was always in the back of my mind to make a post on it. Since I don’t have anything to do today and the lighting is somewhat working in my favor, bouncing off all the white snow, here are some house photos.

mainliving roomfurry

shoe caddy

Living room: first photo from where the front door is. Straight across from that door are stairs going up the the second floor. We have nil foyer, as is the case with these older Cape Cod style houses. Sofa is from West Elm, cream chairs and green one were Craigslist finds, end tables are vintage mid-century (brand called Lane) bought from Mid-Century Warehouse, rug and coffee table are from Pottery Barn, and all lamps are from Target. I really dislike the coffee table and want to replace it. Curtains are from Ikea. Yuki, our other kitty, lives on the green chair and so we hardly ever bother cleaning all the fur off it unless we know we are having a lot of company. The last photo above is of our shoe caddy area. The caddy is from Ikea and mounts to the wall. The bench is from Home Depot and the glass table was a trash find that Z wants to replace with something nicer.


Dining room: lighting wasn’t working well in here, but you get the idea. The paint color is a dark teal with white chair rail and medium grey below chair rail. The dining room table was custom built from Emmorworks. They have a lot more choices now from when we bought the table nearly 3 years ago. Ours is the farmhouse style and you can customize the tables to nearly any size you want, choose from what kind of stain you want and distressed finish. The dining room chairs are all from Mid-Century Warehouse and the large buffet was a Craigslist find. Z found it and apparently the guy owns a mid-century shop, but primarily sells on Craigslist. It was delivered to us from NY. The Sputnik chandelier is a reproduction made from Practical Props in CA. There used to be one of those fugly as hell faux candle chandeliers with maroon light bulb shade covers on it, but we got rid of that. I knew automatically I wanted a Sputnik style light for the dining room and we hunted for a while to get vintage, but they were too expensive.

studycouch view

My study: This room is to the right when walking in the front door. It’s a small bedroom, but I use it as a study. The desk, chair and rug are from Ikea. The loveseat is from West Elm and folds out to a twin sized bed. The entertainment center is from Wayfair. There’s a marble mid century side table next to the lamp from Target in the top photo. Note my manga and amiibo collections (40+ year old going on 14 here….).


Kitchen: Z and I put in the subway tile backsplash ourselves. This room was bile yellow with runny poo brown painted linoleum before. We tore off the old backsplash and found many layers it had undergone throughout the years. First, it was very wild floral wallpaper, then square tiled, which was taken off, but you could still see the grout outline. Then a very 70s looking green-white swirly linoleum was pasted on top and the previous owners painted over that with the poo brown color. The colors in this kitchen, let alone the whole house made me feel ill. For the record: I hate yellow. The whole house was painted in a weird yellowy-beigey bile color with muted brown or runny poo brown as an accent. *shudder* It was awful. Anyway, the island in the kitchen is from Ikea. The previous owners and many others in our neighborhood usually have a tiny kitchen table in that area since it’s considered a kitchenette, but we don’t really need one since we always use the dining room, so we put an island there for storing more stuff. The other side of the island is cut out and there are two stools so you can actually sit against the wall area. Eventually, we plan on replacing that ugly brown speckled granite countertop with something else and repainting the cabinets, but that’s years down the road…


Messy bedroom: Sconces are from Practical Props and the standing lamp is a vintage find from a shop that no longer exists. It’s dented at the base and I’ve been thinking of replacing it. The bureaus, rug, night stands and headboard are all West Elm. There’s a chair I got at an antique shop I use for throwing my workout clothes on. Also, behold our stylish looking humidifier with washcloth underneath so the rug doesn’t get too wet.

There’s also a guest room, but Z is on a call right now in there. If our bedroom is generally the West Elm Room, then the guest room is the Ikea Room since all the furniture (minus the bed) is from there.

Our house was built in 1953 and we wanted to keep the style generally mid-century 1) because that’s the only style of furniture that will properly fit in the house without looking obnoxious and 2) I think it looks better matching the period style inside and out. The previous owners had ginormous leather sofas in the living room and the walking space in it was a postage stamp in any direction. Even though the living room isn’t huge, I feel we did a decent job of getting furniture in it that’s fairly comfortable and doesn’t dwarf it. We also have a mostly finished basement where Z has his study and we have a huge tv and leather sofa. That’s where we play Zelda and other games. The workout room and laundry room and down there as well.



View outside right now.