Monday, January 31, 2011

Run and tell that!

It’s official. My Guy and I moved into our new house this weekend.

Well, more like we started camping at our new house. Since we’re keeping both of our other houses staged, our new house has a bed, a futon, and a ratty old loveseat that the labradoodles use as a chew toy. In addition, there’s a dead squirrel in our front yard.

We are totally Those Neighbors.

But we’re in, and the kitchen is almost fully equipped. There are towels and toilet paper in the bathroom – even if we rigged up a curtain with clothespins and a beach towel. Stay classy, noodleroux.

I’ve been wildly vascillating between a total freakout of the “holy shit, we’ll never get everything done / clean / moved / not crappy” variety and a Zen feeling that we will look back on this time fondly. Also? The move and frantic packing and cleaning have helped divert my attention and provide a calm that only comes with exhaustion.

A few days after the first of the year, in the midst of the new house cleaning and painting, during the most stressful time of the year at Corporate Behemoth, I ran into something. Or, to be more exact, my forearm rammed into a huge lump in my breast. I had a cyst the size of a golf ball. While I am given to exaggeration, I am completely serious here. Golf. Ball.

I had a mammogram. And an ultrasound. And oh, by the way, did I know I had an even bigger cyst right next to the golf ball? A cyst that’s three inches long? Or what about that weird, unidentified mass in the other boob? Had I felt that?

I’m moving. I’m getting married. I don’t have time to deal with these boobie traps.

I had the golf ball aspirated last week, and it refilled. On Wednesday, I’m having both of the cysts – which My Guy and I have named El Cysto and El Nino – aspirated with the help of an ultrasound. And the mystery mass? His name is Kevin, but he prefers to go by Antoine. Like this guy.

Antoine will get a core biopsy, where they take like three chunks out of him, then leave in a piece of titanium so they can track him via mammogram. I wanted to know if this would make airport metal detectors go off, but sadly, the word on the street is a big fat no.

I’ve been really, really angry. This is wholly unfair. I take good care of my body. I’m getting married – I shouldn’t have to explain to the lady doing my dress alterations that the bust might change. I have already filled my shit quota.

And I’ve been scared. I’ve had cysts aspirated before, and it’s truly No Big Deal. It’s sort of like watching a video game, actually – you watch the cyst on the ultrasound and you can see the needle going in. But Antoine, The Mystery Mass? While the specialist thinks he’s either a collapsed cyst or a fibroadenoma, my overactive imagination has taken me to some dark places, where Antoine is armed and dangerous, and not an Internet sensation at all.

But right now? Right now, I’m just looking forward to my left boob not being all cystacular and misshapen from its unwelcome occupants. And I’m glad to be in our house, even if we are camping. We’re about to get three feet of snow, and things could be a lot worse.

But if you would send me good vibes on Wednesday? I’d really appreciate it.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Forever in blue jeans.

Poochie and I received a harried e-mail from our mama today.

Subject line: Today should be a national holiday!

I can't figure out why the banks and schools aren't closed --- isn't it a national holiday?????????? It's Neil Diamond's 70th birthday. Go figure.

xxoo Mom

Well, I am, I said! It is Our Jewish Dad's birthday!

And Neil's lookin' good.

To celebrate, I give you a truly kick-ass song with Neil's kick-ass delivery:

And, for those of you who love a little Neil from back in the day?

Well, just try to tell me that this doesn't get you all shivery. They sang in high school glee club together - isn't that crazy?

So, spill it. What's your favorite Neil song?

Thursday, January 20, 2011

House porn.

Wonder of wonders, miracle of miracles ... we are starting to see a light at the end of the home rehabbing tunnel. The floors were refinished this week, and the grand reveal is tomorrow. And in eight days? We're moving.

Well, we're gonna start camping at the new house. While keeping our other two houses staged. So, we're gonna camp with four dogs, some clothes, one bed, and one futon. And I'm ready.

But in the meantime ... let's take a look at the way we were, shall we?

We decided that these walls looked like that grated carrot salad that grandmas make. You know - the one with the raisins?

Now? It's a lovely sage-y grey color.
And the office? It used to look like it had been fingerpainted with feces. Because that's a good look.

I guess it was so bad that we didn't take a picture of it. So, use your imagination. Fingerpainted poo. Seriously.

Now? Grey and soothing. No poo!
This might be my favorite picture of the entire renovation. Sure, it looks like a picture of a dirty bathtub ...
... but OHMYGOD! Whose legs are those? Who did you kill?

Yeah, those were my legs. And check out my Christmas gifts - yes, I asked Santa to bring me kneepads.
And yes, I am every man's dream girl.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Mixing my poop and Star Wars metaphors. Skillfully, of course.

Remember a few weeks ago when Lady Doodle had explosive diarrhea in my laundry room?

Of course you do. Because it was awesome!

Well, that was truly The Day of Poo. Because that night, I received this e-mail:

Cha Cha,
Hi there! How are you? I actually had 2 dreams about you in the past week (don't remember much about the content though) and thought I would say hi and see how you are doing. Please don't feel obligated to respond but feel free to do so if you wish. I hope you and your family are great and that you are happy! Take care, The Ex-Boyfriend Formerly Known as Mr. Wonderful

I sighed. I reflected on how my house smelled like shit. I read the e-mail to My Guy. And then I reflected on My Guy's brilliance when his only response was, "Well, guess who broke up with his girlfriend?"


Alice and Jake thought I should reply with "Whenever I have dreams about you, they don't end well for you. Just sayin'." But we also discussed how maybe it would be the bigger thing to do to respond and let him know I'm getting hitched. The mature thing.

I waited a week, because that's how long it takes me to get all mature-like. And then I sent this:

Howdy -

Sorry for the delayed response - things are a little hectic here. Just bought a new house, so am busy cleaning, painting, and getting ready to move. I'm getting married this spring, so there's the little business of getting ready for that, too. Lots going on, but we enjoyed a brief but quiet Christmas in Iowa. Everyone is happy and healthy, and my brother got married this fall. Good times.

I hope you and your family are well and enjoyed a happy holiday.

Cha Cha

Which then garnered an almost immediate response:

Cha Cha,
Great news! How exciting! I'm very glad to hear you are doing great. Exciting news for your brother too!

All is good here too. Ladybug is doing great and really enjoying school and her friends there. She's playing soccer and I'm her coach and that's a blast for both of us. My time with her is 50/50 now which is wonderful. Work is going ok as we work through another merger.

I'm really glad you are doing great and congratulations to you and your family. I wish you the very best! Take care, Ex-Wonderful


My Cliff Notes version of this would read, "That's great! Everything's great! I'm great here, too! In no way did I e-mail you to test the waters! There's nothing to see here! Have a great day!"

It makes me think of my favorite scene from Star Wars, when Chewy, Han and Luke bust into the jail to get Leia, and Han ends up talking to the other security guys on the intercom. "Umm ... situation normal! Minor weapons malfunction. Everything's fine here ... uh ... How are you?"

In the midst of the cleaning and dog poo and painting and all of it? This was barely a blip on the radar, other than adding to the poo build-up. Which is pretty amazing, all things considered. But it's hard to spend much time thinking about Jabba the Hutt when you're about to marry Han Solo.

Just sayin'.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Hop along.

The Good.
The new house is starting to come together. We've decided to postpone rehabbing the second floor, which means we can afford to refinish the floors on the main floor. Which we are getting for cheap from a reputable source. !Viva la hardwoods!

The Bad.
Every single surface in the new house requires extensive cleaning, two coats of Kilz, and three coats of paint.

My hands are devoid of skin and smell like PineSol. My dreams of being a hand model are completely dashed.

Everybody's getting a little crotchety, especially the dogs.

The Ugly.
We're all trying to maintain a sense of home in the upheaval, even with the labradoodles at my house and realizing that random stuff - like cooking spray and paper towels - are at Not The House You're Currently At.

Yes, I know that ended with a preposition. And I don't care.

We're all trying to keep it together, but Foxie Doxie expressed his frustrations in a poignant way last night.

He peed on the bed.

I believe in Dogspeak, this means, "This is my bed, bitches! Mine!"

So, yeah. It ain't pretty. But we keep on keepin' on.

The Glorious.
While civil unrest rules at Casa de Cha Cha? Krampus the Christmas Frog is living it up.

He celebrated the Iowa Hawkeye bowl win.

And he's been chillin' with some new friends.

I also understand that he and his posse survived a shih tzu attack. Don't worry - Krampus lives to ribbit another day!
All images courtesy of my mama. Who is awesome. Obviously.

Friday, January 7, 2011

I used to be a blogger.

I don't even know where to begin.

So, we got our house. And we knew it was dirty, right? But I had no idea that it would take me three days to clean the kitchen.

Not kidding. Three days.

Or that the lime-green paint in the bathroom was some weird paint so that when I painted over it and pulled up the painter's tape? My paint pulled up with the tape.

And I had no idea that Lady Doodle would have massive diarrhea in my house. Or after her recovery, Lil' Frankfurter would pick up the torch with vomiting and diarrhea. And I certainly didn't anticipate that I would also puke my guts out, either from the power of suggestion or from an ulcer.

Yeah, I barfed. Wouldn't three houses and four poopy dogs make you sick to your stomach?

The great thing about my partnership with My Guy is that we take turns FREAKING THE FUCK OUT. This has been my week. And I've really done a bang-up job, if I do say so myself.

I woke up yesterday thinking, "No, no thank you. I don't care to move or get married or take care of two new dogs or interact with any human - including My Guy - ever again. I don't wish anybody ill, I'm just ... done. I'm all set. Thanks for asking."

But then I peeled myself out of bed and poured more anti-nausea meds down Lil' Frank's throat. I almost forgot that the pup was so upset at the vet that he'd literally shat on my person.

And then I went to Corporate Behemoth. And I guess I still have multiple houses and a fiance and a wedding date and four dogs. And it's OK.

In other news? Remember when Banjo asked, "Where was Krampus in all of this?"

Oh, Krampus the Christmas Frog. Of course he made an appearance during the holidays. Several appearances, actually.

This was my favorite.

Hey - a frog's gotta do what a frog's gotta do.

And yes, everything is about poop.