Saturday, February 12, 2011
Many of my SparkFriends know that DH and I have been working on a project here in the apartment. Our landlord, dear soul though he is and always here when we need him, is one of those get-it-done-as-fast-as-possible people, never mind if it's right. So we decided to do our projects without him and just maybe inform him later of what we did. So, project number one was to put up a light in the hallway over the pantry door. We had tried other solutions to this, such as buying one of the battery-operated pullchain lights, but this is the best it ever gave us:
It had to be a pullchain light because the original wiring was for a hard-wired smoke detector, which has since been replaced with a battery-operated one, leaving this silly looking plated gap in the ceiling.
Last week I finally bought what I thought was the perfect light for the space, and DH and I began the installation. What we did not anticipate was the stupidity of the builders of this place (not our landlord, he only bought the place) and how difficult it would be to overcome. First of all, the drop ceiling panels were not only painted, but caulked onto the ceiling hangers! Then when we got the old smoke detector fixture down it turned out that it was never anchored to anything at all, only caulked into the fiberglass-backed ceiling panel! Sorry, didn't think to take a photo of that! So we had to take the whole thing down and buy a new junction box to put up, to attach our new light fixture onto.
But the subceiling under the drop ceiling has oddly spaced joists, so in order to be able to anchor into one, we had to put up two pieces of 2 by 3 board, then secure the junction box to them.
I was very pleased at how well this step of the project went. But then the foreign-made materials supplied with the fixture began to fail us, and we ended up having to buy not one but two different fixture brackets and I just cannot tell you how many wire nuts and ground clips we went through! Eventually we got everything working together, after having to actually drill through a portion of the metal junction box to get the bracket to fit!
That was last Monday afternoon, 2/7 (we started the project on 2/4). Between then and now I have of course, worked both my jobs, and DH has fought with the wiring and the cheap wire nuts, not to mention checking that the breaker is turned off every time we wanted to work on it, then the wires nutted off and the breaker turned back on when we were too exhausted to continue!
We began again at about 10:00 this morning, running into yet more difficulties when it turned out there was too much insulation on the top side of the fixture, and the junction box was too far up in the hole on the new piece of fiberglass ceiling panel. It wouldn't allow us to tighten the fixture down without pushing the ceiling panel up nearly 3/4 of an inch. We had to take down the entire assembly and add another layer to the 2 by 3s that were holding up the junction box, to make it come down far enough so the fixture would sit properly against the ceiling panel. This was after I had already had to go back to Home Depot to buy another ceiling panel because I had botched the cutting of the first one we bought!
By the time we got all that done and FINALLY got the fixture attached, it was nearly 4:00 p.m. "Simple" home improvement projects just should NOT take that long! LOL! But this one did. Anyway, it finally is finished.
And now we can see into the pantry!
I went and did two hours of grocery shopping after we finally finished. I do think I got my exercise in for the day! Now it's past time to get dinner, so I'm going to wrap this up and chop veggies to put in the oven with the swai fillets.
A recent blog I read suggested that "Some couples attempting home improvement projects may need to find a marriage counselor as part of the process." Luckily, DH and I are not one of those couples!
Thursday, January 27, 2011
This will be my 6th 8-Week Battle! I can't believe how little I've managed to accomplish in all these battles - I have yet to hit 20 pounds lost here on Spark! I'm only a couple pounds away from that point, and would like to get there before the battle begins on Monday. I have two full days of hours on my feet at the store, and I will be scrupulous about my intake from now until then, and we'll see where that takes me.
All that said, how am I going to attack this battle differently, so I actually kick some of these pounds to the curb for good? I am going to go back to basics, and concentrate on the baby steps again. I even considered going all the way back to Stage One, but I don't think I need to do that. It isn't that I don't KNOW what needs to be done, I just need more practice in doing it.
From today until the battle begins on Monday I will:
1. Drink my eight-plus glasses of water, AND LOG THEM.
2. Stay within my calorie range, AND LOG EVERYTHING.
If I haven't managed both of these steps consistently by Monday, I will continue with these two steps for another week, until they become second nature again. Once I have these down:
3. I will work to increase my fruits and vegetables back up to at least five a day.
4. I will do a minimum of 15 minutes of strength training with my dumbbells every day. Even though muscle weighs more than fat, it also burns more calories! And I'm finding I need more muscles in my new job (which I LOVE, by the way! LOL!)
5. I promise to check in on my Red Squad thread as often as possible, to encourage, lift up and when necessary, drag forward, any and all of my fellow warriors, and I promise to give that kick in the butt when it's needed, if everyone will promise to do the same for me!
I don't have a gym membership, and it's too cold and slippery outside to do very much in the way of cardio walking area, but I am now working on my feet close to 30 hours a week, and wearing my pedometer daily, so
6. Begin again to log my fitness minutes.
I guess that's all l can do for the moment. Let's hit this battle running, Warriors!
Monday, November 15, 2010
I'm glad you are all here to keep my mind occupied tonight. Just got word this afternoon that a dear friend and former coworker died unexpectedly over the weekend, leaving her 94-year-old mother to use her lifeline button to get the rescue squad to the house. I collected some things she had left at the office, things she would use again if they ever called her back from being laid off, and took them over to her house tonight. Gave them to her daughters to take care of. They are trying to straighten out everything, but all the paperwork they can find is made out for her mother, not for herself, so they really don't have a clue what she might have wanted done with anything. The only will they could find with her name on it was from over 10 years ago when she lived over in New Hampshire!
I guess the only real lesson here is that life is too short, and we should always expect the unexpected. My girlfriend and I were just discussing when we were going to get together with her for our next luncheon or dinner outing. Now the answer is never.
Hug your loved ones, Squadmates (and SparkFriends). Take ten minutes tonight, tomorrow, or sometime during the rest of this week, and tell them that you love them and miss them. Don't put it off! It may be too late!
This is my challenge to you all for tonight.
Sunday, November 07, 2010
October Challenge Final Report!
Sunday, November 7, 2010
Track food: After 10/17, I tracked every day! 14 days times .05 per day = .70
8 glasses of water: Goal met every day = .70 more
Calorie Range: 12 days out of 14 - pretty good = .60
5 F/V: 12 out of the 14. better = 1.20
Exercise: 14 out of 14! Progress being made - $3.50!
Total for the last 14 days of October: $6.70
Pounds: No loss
Inhes: 1/4 off waist, 1/2 off hips = 3/4 inches lost for .75
Total to date for the month: $15.10
Yeah, I can get a nice new blouse for this amount!
I think I may try this again for December or January, but for now keeping up with the 8-week battle and my new job will be enough for me to handle.
Thank you all for your support!
Monday, November 01, 2010
I'd love to leave it at that and just let you guess, but I can't contain my excitement! June called this afternoon and I have my orientation at 8:00 tomorrow morning! of my liberation from the H-hole I've been in for so long! I left a pretty terse note taped to the admin office door as I left today, telling them I'll be in at noon tomorrow and I have two more days of training this week and full schedule of training next week!
I am so excited I just can't stand myself! I was very bad - I stopped and bought us a bottle of sparkling on the way home tonight! Oh, heck - you have to celebrate the break throughs, don't you!?!?
Well, I do anyway!
Oh, all my SparkFriends, I have been trying to get out of here for SOOOOOOO long! Thank you all for all your support and all your prayers. I have no doubt whatsoever they played a part in this!
Well, I do have to feed us tonight too - can't go to orientation hung over from too much champagne and not enough food! LOL!
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