Welcome to My Chaotic Home!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Some bad news. A little distracted.

I was in the middle of making a post about my planner, and just needed to get the photos and all that, but life has totally siderailed me.. well all of us.

My husband came home in the middle of the day Tuesday and told me he lost his job.

The new district manager had been riding his rear end for months. It seriously seemed like a personal vendetta for some reason. Imagine Professor Delores Umbridge from Harry Potter. Well, she finally got her way and got rid of him.  He's gotten glowing evaluations before she arrived, and his last store manager even recommended him to be promoted to a store manager and get his own store.

So, here we are. He has one normal paycheck coming, and then maybe a third or half of one left after that. I'm the one with the insurance, so at least we still have that, but my checks are pretty small in comparison to what his used to be since they take out so much for the insurance each month.  But Thank God we still have it. The only life insurance we could get on him was through work.  They carried one on him of his yearly salary amount, and then we opted to buy two more years worth.  So, we didn't have to worry about what would happen to us if the unthinkable happened to him.... and now we don't have that. His health history makes it almost impossible to find life insurance.  I can't even carry any on him through my work, and they're pretty lenient. The life insurance we had one the girls was also through his work.  It would just cover expenses in the case of more unthinkable happening, but that's gone too. Fortunately, in January my benefits renew and I can choose to carry more insurance, but that'll make my checks even smaller.

He's already doing whatever he needs to do to try to make it better.  Not sure he can get Unemployment benefits, but he's applied.  He's looking at available management jobs, and there's a couple, but there's a long commute. He's also appealed the decision at work.  Not sure anything will come of it, but at least he appealed.

So, I've been working on number crunching and seeing how far we can make it on just my income.  It's not far.

If you feel so inclined, some prayers about this will be greatly appreciated.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Crisis averted!

This morning, when I got off work at 3:15am, I realized the house felt warmer and stuffier than normal.  I figured I just didn't have enough windows open, as it was nice and cool outside... but then I realized the central AC was on.  Uh oh.  I felt the air blowing from the vents... not cold.  Ugh.

I turned off the thermostat, and it kept running.  I had to turn it off with the breaker, then I removed the panel.  I was in too much shock to take a pic, but I found one online that looks like the exact same model, and it looked exactly like this...

My heart sank. 

I went to the internet and searched what can cause it, and found 2 options.  One was a dirty filter, and the other was it needed recharging.  Well, the filter was BAD.  Like I'd forgotten it existed - bad... *shameface*   It was so bad, that it actually had sagged and was frozen to the top of the AC unit. Yeah.

So, I covered the furnace underneath the AC unit with plastic sheeting and duct taped it into place and put the end of it into a bucket, so the runoff wouldn't burn out the furnace or sit on the floor underneath.  It sits in a drip pan, but I didn't know if it might be clogged too.  Then I went to bed.

Thankfully it was nice and cool today, in the lower 70s, so I didn't bake while I slept. I did have a couple of windows open, but it had been sprinkling, so I was worried it would rain inside, but it didn't. So, when I woke up, the ice was all gone, and it was basically all dry again. 

My daughter had dropped by, so I had her run me to Lowe's and I got more filters.  After I got one installed and got it all turned back on, it's finally blowing cold air again (so I know it didn't need recharging whew!)  Yay!  So, thankfully, it seems it was just the filter, and there was no apparent damage done by it freezing over and continuing to run before I caught the issue.

Well, there is still an issue.  The thermostat controls do turn the compressor outside on and off, but it doesn't turn off the AC unit/blower inside. It just seems to be stuck in ON mode.  So even if it gets to the temp I set it to, it won't turn off by itself.  I did make sure it was set to auto, but nothing helps.  So, I turned it off with the breaker again since it's another cool night, and we don't need it on now anyway. I just hope we don't have to get a new thermostat.

Hope y'all are having a better Monday than I am!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

A bit delayed - moving my daughter into her college dorm

Our daughter Rhiannon is a freshman at college this Fall. She's attending Maryville College, and is doing well so far.  She's majoring in Teaching English as a Second Language and minoring in Japanese.  She's already considering changing her major to Writing and Communications.  She has to see if she actually *likes* to teach or not.  She's somewhat of an introvert, so anything is going to be a struggle for her.  I just hope she finds something she's passionate about.

We moved her into her dorm back in August, and am just now getting the pics posted.  I didn't get any pics of the moving process.  We were so busy and there were so many people.  The college only allowed moving in from 2-4pm on that one day. It was insane!  But we finally got her stuff unloaded, lugged up 3 flights of stairs after crossing a whole parking lot every time and then unpacked and put away. Whew! I'm going to start sweating again just thinking about it!  It was in the 90s that week!

I've visited her dorm since then.  It is NOT this neat now lol!   She's got my old office mini-fridge and the kettle I got for my kitchen (I still have one in my office). A friend of ours got her the microwave. And she took our big coffee pot. I don't drink much coffee and have a percolator I prefer anyway. We got the help of some passing college guys to loft her bed.  Then she decided she's afraid of falling off the bed at night. She can't get it to unloft now though. (It was really hard to budge to start with). Besides she's go so much space with it lofted. I'll have to see if we can rig up some sort of rail to make her feel safer. Anyone else out there with a college kid with this problem?

So glad they fed the families after move-in hours. We were worn out and famished by then. It felt weird leaving her behind, and the house was so so quiet for a while. 

We've come to appreciate the new normal though.  The house is quieter, and I get less interruptions at work, but I do miss her sudden bursts into my room to tell me the latest news or whatever's on her mind. I am so thankful she likes talking to me.  We had our moments over the years.  She was definitely the hardest one of the four, but it was all worth it!

She's coming home to visit for a long weekend in October. Can't wait!

Our new college girl. 

Friday, September 26, 2014

Catsitting again.

Since my mother in law is staying in Florida at her parents' home so it's not completely unoccupied for so long at a time while her mother is in the nursing home, we are taking care of her cat. 

Her name is Oreo and she's a long haired tuxedo who LOVES attention. My mother in law is not really an animal person, and probably doesn't pay a whole lot of attention to her, so she gets tons of loving from all of us while she stays with us.

Since she'd been here before and eventually felt right at home,  this time around she got out of the crate and immediately decided she was in charge. The other cats have accepted her, and I think Merlin is in love. She doesn't seem to socialize with the other 3 very much, but they get along okay.

I think she prefers humans anyway.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Some Fall decor around the house.

I know I promised a post on the beautiful things we got to bring home from Christopher's grandparents' house, but I've not  gotten around to taking some really nice close up shots of stuff yet.

Like here's a shot of the bookshelf.  It used to hold all our games for easy access. Now it's holds depression ware.  1-2 colors per shelf. I also made use of a lot of the lace and doilies she had. No sense in them just sitting in a drawer.

While I didn't take better pics of that stuff, I did get some shots of the Fall stuff I put out this weekend. I just finally felt in the mood to decorate, so I got it all out to see what I had to work with. Not much really.  I have one small box and it's mostly Halloween buckets and pieces of old costumes.

My phone's camera is not the greatest, and I don't have a real camera.  But this shows the kitchen table all decked out.  Schnitzle's cage is now by the back door.  The cat/dog food containers are under and around it. The window dressings are some of the lace and linens I got from Christopher's grandmother, as well as the teapots.

Here's a better one of the table..

I used china and stoneware that was in earth tones and looked "Fallish". The wheat and poppy stoneware mug and saucer than belonged to Christopher's GREAT grandfather is tucked under the dried grass I put in an ironstone-looking-pitcher.  The basket is full of tomatoes from the garden.

You can see the saucer a little better in this one.  The note in the mug said it was the only cup that Christopher's great grandfather would drink out of. It's in perfect condition. Not a chip.  *knocks on wood!*

The pumpkin shakers, I've had for years, but the squirrels are from his grandparents' house. I thought they fit right in.

Then we move on to the bigger dining/game table.  It was set for dinner when I took it. I got such great linen napkins from his grandparents, but I realized I don't have any napkin rings. I obviously need a trip to Pier One soon. :)

I just kind of threw this together and moved stuff til it felt right. The old galvanized pitcher thing holds wild flowers and stuff from the back field.  I used a bowl that matches one I used on the kitchen table in browns and gold.  The cute Dollar Tree pumpkins, pine cones I had from last Christmas and some pumpkin candles.

I don't remember where I got the little rock, but I love it. 

 The green glass bowl is a chip and dip set that my neighbor and friend, Laura got at the local antique store and gave me for my birthday.

Then we move on to the sideboard by the front door. I kept it simple, since there's so much stuff on it. I put a runner on it in fall colors, put out a pumpkin candle and there's also a jar with fall silk flowers (Dollar Tree yay!) and my poor broken and patches together quails. (The silver in the middle is some of what we got from his grandparents')

I got a shot of it from the living room, but it's fuzzy.

And that just leaves the coffee table.  I wish I'd gotten another shot after I got the new orange candles for the cat candle holders. They're pumpkin spice too, of course. The swan and the lace piece under neath are from his grandparents as well, and the table usually just has the lace and the swan holding the coasters (bright orange plastic, totally vintage and were given to me by his grandma YEARS ago.  They had been her mother-in-law's coasters and she hated them lol. )  I just folded over a fall runner on top of the lace and added the clear glass votive holders so I could have more candles out. My mother in law gave me the cat candle holders for Christmas. They are really cute with candles.

That recliner you can see there was Christopher's great grandfather's chair.  Not the same great grandfather who had the mug.  Both sides of his mother's family saved EVERYTHING and kept it in mint condition.

I'm glad I've decorated, and now I can go look at everyone else's decorations on their blogs.

Oh I need to get some shots of outside soon. I stopped fussing at my husband to mow the lawn and just do it myself now.  I usually mow the front on Tuesdays and the back on Saturdays - my days off.
That, and walking the dogs every day down the street and back has made me more aware of the outside of the house, and how bad some of it looked from the road.  I still want to get some pretty mulch and cover up some bare places in the bed I made, and get some more mums. Hopefully this week!

Hope y'all had a great weekend and have a good week ahead!

I'm linking this on Share Your Cup Thursday. Love that blog!