Saturday, August 23, 2008

Gearing Up

Isn't it totally intimidating to be entering a weekend knowing that there are about 25 things you HAVE to get finished? That's the boat we're in this morning. Eric got up early to watch the Pats vs. Eagles pre-season game, and I'm just sitting here waiting for the game to finish so we can go to the dogpark and get started with our day. 

Here's what's on the agenda:
  • Eric has to replace the siding on the back of the house around the windows. This is necessary for our new insurance policy, which is roughly half the cost of our old insurance policy. It's a stinky job, but will be worth it. 
  • I am going to knock the nails out of the trim that is sitting in the guest bedroom. Our new bed is being delivered today, so I want to get things cleaned up in there. 
  • I need to go grocery shopping. We have beer and mustard in the fridge. 
  • We need to put another coat of paint on the living room walls, and get the furniture put back. 
  • Wash the floors.
  • Put away all of the crap that is sitting in the foyer, including 80% of Eric's power tools, 4 of my bags, books, movies, etc. etc. etc. We have a little built in bench that I love, but right now, it's serving as the catch all for all the stuff we're too lazy to find a home for. 
  • Find some ground cover for the front yard. I shouldn't be obsessing about this, but we've got some nice weather today and it's supposed to rain gently tonight. It would be a good thing if I could get the plants in the ground at some point today. 
  • I'd like to get the fireplace prepped for its new tile, which I have yet to pick out. I think that will make the whole room look like we've gotten something done. 
  • Clean up the back yard. It's looking a little trashy at this point, what with all of the brown grass (dogs' fault), debris, and unkempt-ness. I think we're just going to bite the bullet and get the rest of the fence installed sooner rather than later. We're now sharing a 50 year old chain link fence with our crazy neighbor, and I am positive that the only reason Yogi hasn't tried to escape is because we treat him like a king. He could totally leap that fence without even trying. Plus, Spike, neighbor's dog, is taking an unhealthy interest in my Pixie, and that is NOT happening. 
Story about our neighbor. She's harmless, okay? She's very elderly, and has lived in the house for, oh, 50 years, so she's not going anywhere. This house is HUGE--bigger than ours, and she lives there by herself with Spike. Her daughter lives down the road and she stops by every day, which is a relief. 

Anyway, our relationship up to this point has been cordial. She is constantly outside picking things up off her lawn, so we see her every time we come in and out. She's obsessed with keeping her lawn clean. Rather than raking, she bends over and picks up individual leaves and sticks, and she is especially vigilant with the little helicopter seeds. She has picked her lawn so clean that I do believe nothing will grow there. It's just patches of dirt. We found her up on her roof the other day, sweeping. 

None of this is a problem. We're happy to keep an eye out for her and to be good neighbors. She is preferable to the other old lady who lives across the street who wants to give me her phone number for some reason and yells at me every time I'm out front. BUT! Our neighbor has dementia, and she gets really confused and angry quite often. The other day we were out painting and putting up the railing and she was out, so we asked how she was. "I'm MAD," she said. We asked why, and she told us she was mad because our contractors had stolen her hose rack--the thing you wind the hose around that gets attached to the house. I said I didn't think that our contractors, who haven't been here regularly in the last 6 weeks, would steal a hose rack, and that they had definitely not been in her yard. She said I was lying, and that she was going to press charges, that she didn't have money to be buying a new hose rack, and that she'd lived there for 50 years and nothing like that had ever happened since we moved in... UGH! I understand entirely that this is the product of her being confused and all that, but I can't help but be a little ticked off. I'm okay with having a crazy neighbor (I've had many, including the paranoid schizophrenic man who lived behind me in Santa Fe, who insisted upon directing the traffic at the end of our driveway...) but my patience for it stops when it gets to this point. So we've been kind of avoiding her. I feel bad, but not bad enough. 

So that's our story. The good news is that, excepting the two old ladies, the rest of our neighbors appear to be 1) sane, 2) friendly, and 3) interested in making the neighborhood as good as it can be. Which is nice. 

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