Friday, February 24, 2012

Mortgage Means "Death Contract" in French

Call me Sisyphus. I am part of the never ending grind of home ownership. I am here to say to American women - having a house does not NOT have to be part of having it all!

I, like many people I suspect, was very eagar to "grow up". I hated (still do) being told what to do by people with such inferior intellegence to my own as my parents (if I only knew then what I know now...) But I knew what I wanted and by golly, I was going to have it. The whole nine yards - the husband, home, and children. Be careful what you wish for as the saying goes.

I'm grateful for the husband and the children (most of the time), but why I thought I HAD to have a house eludes me. I vaguly remember living in our 1 bedroom apartment as a twenty-something and thinking that a house would be SO much better. No noisy neighbors, my own parking spot, more space to entertain, oh and the chance to be taken seriously as an adult. Because nothing says serious like having a mortgage.

Now owning the home for 7 years, it has some of the advantages of the above list, but the disadavantages make me understand what Dinane Keaton was going for in Baby Boom when she bought 20 gallons of kerosene. Because I unintentionally bought the MONEY PIT. I loved our little cottage but it has its flaws. Just like the quirks about your mate you found amusing when you first met that now drive you bat shit crazy, likewise my house has become like an endless bad date. I now know that the phrase "It's a good investment" is a lie. Know why? Because a GOOD investment will let you get your money back out while owning a house is like buying GM stock. You can get in for a great deal but good luck unloading it.

My home had "good bones". That translates into, when it was new it was well built but 70 years and 5 tenents later, it needs to be overhauled. Don't get me wrong, I certainly don't advocate buying a new built home either. Those things look like cardboard doll houses that are made with less real wood than an Ikea entertainment center. But starry eyed as we were, my husband convinced me (and himself apparently) that we could own and take care of a home. That idea went out the window about a month after we moved in and our first daugheter was born. Because also (so conveniently) at that time, the kitchen ceiling sprouted a leak every time we took a shower. And my husband had no idea what to do about it. I mean, he gave it the old college try - new grout, tightening up the head joints, whatever, he did try. But to no avail. Finally when the kitchen ceiling began to fall on the floor, we had to admit we were in over our heads. And so it goes, the leak became a bathroom redo, which necessitated calling in a plumber, which meant ripping out the kitchen ceiling, which meant a kitchen makeover and so on.

Guess what? None of these items on the agenda have ever been completed. There is still an unfinished wall in the bathroom, a hole in the kitchen ceiling, and my cabinets are still sitting in the garage while the dishes have to be piled on the counter tops. As an bonus, the uptairs toilet no longer flushes properly (we think "someone" tried to flush a Barbie toothbrush down it). But this is yet another example of why home ownership should be left to the experts. I'm not a plumber. Or a roofer, a drywall expert, a landscape artist, an electrician, or a small appliance repair person. Unless you are, (or are independently wealthy, I'd think twice). All I see about this house now is, how can I spend the least amount of money to fix it while getting the most amount of money back out of it? I'm not optimistic. Whether we stay here for the rest of our lives or are lucky enough to find a way out, I will never buy another house! I'm thinking, town-home sounds good. One with a maintenance person on call 24/7.

Monday, December 19, 2011

It's Beginning to Stress A Lot Like Christmas...

My first Christmas post. Things are as usual, crazy around here. This year is extra special because Grandma is leaving to visit Auntie in Kansas for the holiday and that leaves just Grandpa here for the festivities. If your family is like mine, Grandma is what makes Christmas happen. She does the biggest tree, she bakes the cookies, she plans the meal, she's had the grand-kids presents wrapped and squirreled away since September. Grandpa's contribution usually includes some especially boozy eggnog and maybe stringing lights on the front of the house. So this year if we want to have that magical special warm and fuzzy Xmas, its up to me. Great timing too considering things have been slow at our business so guess who has not got any presents wrapped or squirreled away? Yup, moi. I think some re-gifting will be in order. As for cookies, I have agreed to try gingerbread men for our 6 yr old. So far, I'm out of eggs and need to borrow a cookie cutter. But we will persevere. Instead of a big holiday feast like Grandma would do, I'm thinking i'll make a one dish meal - maybe a festive Christmas lasagna! Oh how the smell of slow roasted lasagna filling the house will surely put everyone in the proper spirit! I did manage to get a tree up. Mind you it's a Walmart special - prelit for $40 - but hey with all of the ornaments and a couple of glasses of Pinot Noir in you, no one's going to complain. So to wrap up, Dear Santa, All I want for Christmas is some prescription muscle relaxers, a good bottle of wine, and maybe a moment of Zen if you can find one for me in this chaos. Thanks and God Bless, The Omahamama

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Long Overdue Rant

So I'm turning 35 on Friday. I actually forgot how old I was - I've been mistakenly telling everyone that I'll be 36. How and why would a person forget how old they are. Dementia? Sort of...

Lilly turned six.
Lolo turned 2.75.

There is definitely more than one blogs worth of stuff here so I'll summarize with a few blog post titles that would make awesome rants.

*Husband dropped his phone in sink a.k.a Sharing a Cell Phone.
*No one in my home knows how to flush a toilet.
*Why do sound/motion activated noise-making toys never seem to wear out of batteries?
*Refrigerator light bulb burned out.
*Above stove light burned out.
*Republicans are oblivious.
*Our family van is falling apart.
*I am not an accountant.
*My home is the Money Pit.
*We can't afford a vacation.
*Dad, you thought I'd agree to let you take my girls out-of-town on Thanksgiving?
*Fender bender in my driveway.
*Lactose intolerance.
*Cat yak.
*Remembering when I used to get "my hairs did".
*Halloween: Sugar is evil and should be a controlled substance for kids under 18!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

I love my little girls, really I do. But after what they put me through this weekend...they are lucky there is no "people pound" or they might've gotten the boot!

Here are the highlights:

Friday afternoon - discover an entire bag of goldfish crackers spilled and crushed into the bedroom carpet. While cleaning stumble upon the cat covered in body wash. Have to "wash" said cat in the shower. Meanwhile, baby escapes the house in the nude and goes streaking around the backyard.

EARLY Saturday morning - wake up to find baby in my bed. Roll over and sink my hand into a pile of sleeping baby poo; have to clean her, change sheets, and remake bed all between 3 and 5 a.m.

Saturday night - finally get a break. Enjoying wine and marshmallows (don't judge me!) outside in front of fire with hubby. Go inside to refill my glass and slip on the kitchen floor, falling and bashing my still healing knee that I fell on this winter. Discover "someone" has sprayed COOKING SPRAY all over the floor.

Sunday morning - while attending mass all appears to be calm until 5 yr old tries to balance on the kneeler and brings it crashing down into my shin. Later she also runs across my bare foot with shoes on.

Conclusion: I blew my calories this weekend with stress eating and drinking. But really, after reading this, can you blame me?

Monday, May 23, 2011

Funny Things.

My children are slowly but surely driving me insane. They do have a few redeeming qualities that I want to mention lest they grow up not getting that mama's blog is meant to be funny, not mean.

Right now I can hear Lolo watching Dora the Explorer. When the cartoon characters ask aloud: "Do YOU like to sing?" I hear her little voice respond "Uh-huh!" It's hilarious.

Lilly has recently picked up the word "awkward". She uses it for everything - except things that are actually awkward. I'm generally amused but I'm only allowing her to use once a day after hearing her drop it like a swear forty times this past weekend.

We had pretty strong weather when we celebrated my sister's college graduation. At one point the whole party had to rush under the tent as rain and hail began to pour from the sky. Lilly didn't mind and ran headlong into the storm screaming "it's raining ICE CUBES!"

I scold Lilly. Lilly scolds Lolo. Lolo scolds the cat. HA!

I guess these are the kind of things that keep me from dropping them off alone at the bus station.



Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Let Me Paint You A Picture...

...Or what happens when you leave kids alone with a camera.

"Look Mama! Look at my teeth! See Lolo's teeth? Mama, can I take a picture of your tee-"
NO, no you cannot. Please don't play with the camera!