Wednesday, January 22, 2014

I'm Heather! I'm Disgusting!

Mike's bathroom has a better shower than mine. Mine is a tub shower with a shower curtain, and it's very nice, but his is a step-in, with sliding doors and little seats! It has a sauna effect, and if you're cold, it's the best place to be to get your blood flowing. He was in Dallas this past week for work, and I practically moved in there. For REASONS.

Sure, we could share - we did for a while. But take the fact that I have to get up earlier than him and couple it with the fact that he has a hard time falling back asleep once I'm making all sorts of noise in the bathroom that is just steps away from the bed, and you've got a very cranky boyfriend. 

The condo has two and a half bathrooms (I KNOW!), and so I carted all of my girly crap into the other full bath and set up shop. 

Mike's shower also has the distinct advantage of not being clogged with my hair.

So... 

I am usually pretty good about dealing with issues as they arise, but when said issues dictate my getting dirty or being uncomfortable, I tend to ignore them for far longer a period of time than I would most anything else. Example: cleaning out the fridge (I've actually paid my sister-in-law to do it for me before). 

Case in point - a majorly clogged drain.

You know how when your shower fails to drain as quickly as before? How you basically end up ankle deep in your own filth-water because it's failing to drain at an acceptable rate? Yeah, I am not going to tell you how long I allowed that to go on before I finally did something about it. But definitely be aware that there is a reason for the title of this post.

After a particularly shitty day, I was NOT leaving the house again. My shower that morning had been disgusting and I knew that it needed to be dealt with. But Mike had used the rest of the Drano weeks before.

To the internets!

I soon discovered that I could use household products - products I actually had on hand - for a more natural, chemical-free solution: baking soda and vinegar.

Basically, I made an erupting volcano in my bathtub. (Of course, this was after I used a hanger to remove all of the hair from the drain, leaving me dry heaving for a good five minutes. IT WAS SO GROSS.)

And you guys? The erupting volcano worked so well! Here's what you need:

  • 2 cups baking soda
  • 4 cups boiling water
  • 1 cup white vinegar

Steps:

  1. Pour one cup of baking soda down the drain
  2. Pour two cups of boiling water down the drain and wait a few minutes. Apparently, this mixture helps to clean all of the slimy gunk from the pipes.
  3. Pour the remaining baking soda down the drain, followed by the cup of vinegar. Immediately plug the drain, because it's volcano time! You'll hear sizzling from the chemical reaction going on in your pipes (dirty!), and little bubbles might escape. Give it a few minutes.
  4. Unplug and pour more boiling water down the drain.
  5. Repeat if necessary, re: you are disgusting like me.

Enjoy!

Monday, January 06, 2014

Fucktons of Snow and Asshole Kids

Southeastern Michigan got a fuckton of snow over the last few days, and the temperatures have dropped so dramatically that things have practically shut down. Except for my job! Nope, we never, ever, ever close.

Never, ever, ever.

Knowing this, I woke up earlier than usual, spent a good twenty minutes cleaning the FOOT of snow off of my car, and cautiously drove to work on a near-empty freeway. The roads weren't bad at all, in that I-94 is a free-for-all kind of thing, and I managed to get to work early.

And yet, I was the ONLY PERSON in my office to show up to work today even though the majority of my coworkers live in this city. This city that has reliable public transportation. That is free to all employees.

But if the boss gives you the option of working from home, I'm guessing that most people will take it. Except if the email is sent twenty minutes after you've arrived at work.

Balls.

But some people did trickle in over the course of the next few hours - mostly people from other departments, but whatever. One doctor showed up for a meeting for which only one person actually showed up. Because the schools were closed, he brought his preschooler with him to the meeting, and left him near my desk for over an hour.

He immediately turned on an iPad. At - what I thought was - top volume. After about a half hour of Mickey Mouse and his shriller-than-shrill voice, I had had enough.

"Sweetie, could you turn the volume down a little?"

His response, after slowly looking up at me with a frown?

"It already IS down a little." 

And then he turned it UP.

I don't have children. I don't know anything about how difficult it is to raise children, and I certainly would never be one of those dicks who try to give advice on child-rearing. But. I do know the difference between "being a four year-old" and "being a complete asshole of a child."

GAH.

Friday, December 20, 2013

Quinoa Salad and the Rolling Pin of Doom

I get on these kicks where I am determined to do something - usually prepare some recipe I found online - and I jump in head first without even thinking about the needed materials, the time frame, the sheer ridiculousness of the idea, and on and on and on.

This was one of those moments. BUT. It was one of the moments when I TOTALLY REDEEMED MYSELF. 


They approve.

I decided, on a whim, to make this recipe: Quinoa Salad with Hazelnuts, Apple, and Dried Cranberries. I found it on the interwebs on FOOD52, and could think of nothing else until I got to the store, purchased the few food items I needed, and got home.



Cook the quinoa. Okay, fine. But first! Rinse the quinoa. Have you ever made quinoa? It is the tiniest little grain-like entity ever, and even my fine mesh strainer was not fine enough to contain them. It took a bit of swishing in a bowl of water, but I finally got them sparkly clean. (Also, it apparently isn't really a grain, it has some kind of bitter coating on it - hence the rinsing - and it is loaded with protein. Worth the hassle, it seems.)

Disclaimer: Many pictures have been staged to protect the innocent.

Chop the parsley - done. Chop the green onions - done. Sautee celery and yellow onion - done.

Roast the hazelnuts.

Hmmm.


Fine. 

What it should have said was, "Roast the SHELLED hazelnuts," because my dipshit self had never cooked/baked with hazelnuts before (unless Nutella counts) and didn't realize that she needed to get the fucking nuts out of the fucking shells before throwing them in the fucking oven.

They took three different trips into the oven before I realized this.

So there I was, sitting on the kitchen floor at eleven o'clock at night whacking a ziplock bag of hazelnuts with a rolling pin. Those fuckers were SUCH bastards. It took a while of trying before I got the movement down, and when they cracked, it was the most satisfying crack.

It didn't get easier from there, however. They went back into the oven, and the recipe promised that the peels would slough off, but THEY DID NOT.


This is a picture of PURE FRUSTRATION.

My perfectionist self did not appreciate that the peels were still there, and went at them with a paring knife until realizing that it was after midnight and perhaps I was a jackass.

But this is the output, and it was awesome:


I forgot to take a picture, so here's the one from Food 52 instead.


Anyway, it was a huge success in that it was delicious, but it was not a success in that I didn't get to bed until one in the goddamned morning and had to get up at six. 

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

The Best of Boots, The Worst of Boots

My Dear Merrell Spire Peak Waterproof Boots,

After visiting Betsy in New York and coveting her pair, I acquired you in the early spring of 2007. It was love at first sight. For the DC winters, you were not at all necessary (unless it was Snowpacalypse or Snowmaggedon - both of which occurred in the era of insane social networking and after I moved away and during which the entire DC area went fucktard batshit insane). 

You were an art form for the feet!


Brand-new you!

And you were available in my size!

When I relocated to Michigan, you were most definitely necessary. That first winter back saw many, many snowstorms, and you kept my feet toasty, warm, and dry.

We had so many good times - I was able to wear skirts and dresses in the winter because of you! I was semi-fashionable while surrounded by undergrads because of you! I didn't slip and fall on my ass as many times as I probably would have if it wasn't for you!

But I got older. And so did you.


A mere shadow of your former self...

Now, my friends, I must say goodbye. You have sagged and buckled around the ankle, and you are digging into the bad one with such disdain that I have to stifle a scream with every other step. 

In fact, you are hurting my ankles so badly that I am tempted to walk to the parking garage in my socks. And it's 21 degrees out there right now.

No amount of shoe polish can return you to your former glory. Believe me, I've tried.

I hope that one day I will become acquainted with others in your family, but until then, I am broke and bootless.

FAREWELL.

Sunday, November 03, 2013

STOP IT

I was sitting in my car in some parking lot, phone to my ear, wondering if my bleeding ears were emptying INTO the phone, when I had a bit of an epiphany:

Can we all agree as a nation, that we are over Kenny G?  

I was stuck on hold with one of his screechier songs blasting in my ear, wondering why they couldn't just play some sort of muzak instead.

Thankfully the song ended after what felt like an eternity. The next song started... AND IT WAS THE SAME SONG.

And then I died.

MURDERER.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Three Words: Bumpy. Cake. Sundae.

Do you know what a bumpy cake is? DO YOU? This is bumpy cake:


Do you see all of that frosting? It is incredible. It's made by several companies, but the two best are Awrey's and Sanders.


Growing up, my cousin, Holley, would always have an Awrey's bumpy cake for her birthday - much to the delight of her cousin (me, for those of you not paying attention). It was so frosting-y and chocolaty and delightful, and one piece was never enough.

Right, so Kari and I were screwing around in Downtown Wyandotte and decided that what we needed was ice cream. Sometimes that ice cream craving is solved by a cone from Burger King or a frosty from Wendy's, but this was serious. A very serious craving. And Sanders was open.

Come in! You will not be disappointed...

When Kari and I entered the ice cream parlor, we thought that we were getting ice cream -like a scoop or two. But then I saw the menu and knew that it was fate that brought us there that night because BUMPY CAKE SUNDAE.

You might be thinking, "That can't be real." OH WAIT IT CAN.

Eat me.

I just realized that this picture doesn't do it justice, for you can only see the ice cream and hot fudge, but trust me... there was cake under there, and it was borderline illegal.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

The Cleanest the Bathrooms Have Ever Been

Being laid up with a broken anything is a pain, but having a broken ankle just really, really sucked. I am finally to the point where I am allowed to put weight on it, and I have slowly been reintegrating myself into the land of the bipedal. I am desperately trying to be careful - to not over-do it, really - and just let things happen organically.

God, that last sentence made me sound like a giant fucking hippie. Organically. Fuck off, ME.

Mike has been really wonderful throughout this entire ordeal - and really all the time, to be honest. He takes care of me even when I am a tremendous pain in the ass. I try to keep the house clean and pretty since he's the one paying the bills and working a ridiculously stressful job. I figure that it's the least that I can do.

But not being able to thoroughly clean the house was bothering me, and I found that things were becoming more and more cluttered. I could tell that it bothered him, too, but he never said a word.

So I hired a house cleaning service. It's something that I would have never considered before, because it seems so... superfluous. So... uppity. But in the end? SO WORTH IT.

I have been able to do some surface cleaning and the like, but vacuuming took about ten times as long as usual, and I was completely unable to vacuum the stairs. I thought about trying on multiple occasions, but all I could envision was losing my balance and breaking other bones.

Because it was a Groupon deal, it was well worth the money, but I don't know that I could justify paying full price for something that I am soon going to be able to do on my own.

Friday, August 16, 2013

Nordstrom Fail

When I was in Seattle last June, Mike's mom took me to Nordstrom Rack. It was brilliant. It was enormous. It was cavernous, even. 

You see, Nordstrom (and its Rack) is like Mecca to me, predominantly because it is one of the few places that actually carries shoes in my size. (A ridiculous size 4, if you must know. Which is the same as wearing size 2.5 in girls' shoes. And I'm almost 33 years old.) I really couldn't care less about the designer clothes and whatnot - I just want to wear shoes that don't have Hello Kitty on them.



A Rack location opened in Ann Arbor in April, but I forgot to go. And then a few weeks later, me and my ankle were passed out on the couch reading magazines and binge-watching episodes of Parks and Recreation, so I didn't get a chance to visit.

Well, I finally got my car back, and I gotz paid, so I drove my ass to Arborland and hobbled inside.

The shoes were in the back left corner of the store, and it took me a few minutes to figure out where the bitty ones were. Imagine my disappointment when instead of the WALL of size fours I encountered in Seattle, there was one measly rack. ONE.

I swear that if it wasn't for the pain meds I would have sunk to the floor and cried.

Thursday, August 15, 2013