Our garage is taking shape…

Before we started our garage construction, I never really thought about how a garage was built. The concept of building permits, variances, inspections and cost never once entered my mind. In fact, I remember not even liking garages at one point.

My, how things change.

We now have a building, attached next to our house, with insulation, dry wall and floor. It’s incredible to me because only a few weeks ago, we had a hole and a ton of dirt. Now we have an actual building. And it’s full of interesting parts.

There are doors, windows, frames, places where the lights will go. There are tons of different materials and somehow, it’s all orderly and makes sense. It’s also incredibly neat and tidy. I love neat and tidy.

The floor is made of cement and it’s graded so that the snow melts away from the house. Grading is something else I had never known about before. Now, it’s super important.

It looks like a garage and I’m pretty excited about it. A garage. Who would have ever thought I’d say a garage is a thing of beauty?

Weekend Coffee Share

(credit:Videezy)

If we were having coffee, I’d be on my second cup. We had people over last night and I’m still recovering from the trauma (introvert much?). I have a headache–probably from the fire, not the people–and feel exhausted.

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you I’m having trouble ditching my vegan diet. It’s a very odd thing. I’ll get a plate of something with cheese and go to eat it and think of what that cheese will turn into and I just can’t eat it. I’m not even talking meat or chicken! My ever-helpful hubby has decided that it’s sink or swim time for me and he has this planned for lunch…

If we were having coffee, I’d tell you that the weather is nuts and we’re literally under a heat wave now. It includes both heat and humidity so our humidex factor is something obscenely high–as in you’d better morph into a camel hot. So, once more, we Canadians go from boots to sandals.

If we were having coffee, not too long would pass before I’d start rambling on about my doggies and how cute they were last night…until River sat too close to the fire and an ember landed on his fur…and I freaked out and dowsed him with the emergency water bucket…well…I’ve never seen him run that fast. But, in my defence, dog fur is incredibly flammable.

The Weekend Coffee Share was created by Part Time Monster and is now hosted by Nerd in the Brain.

Where I’m a big baby

My lovely hubby has invited friends over and…well, I want to hide.

I’m terrible, I know. I can’t act like a two year-old and run away. I have to be a graceful hostess, smile and greet people. But I want to hide in the bedroom and pretend I’m sick.

I’m an introvert. I love writing, reading, painting and petting my dogs. I work with people, so I figure the weekends are my time, mine. I like to hide and nest until the week and work force me back out again.

Today, in about an hour, I will have to face people. Lots of people. In my house. And I don’t like it.

Could I pretend to be sick?

The truth is groups of people terrify me.

They are coooomiiinnngggg….

 

Where I get deja vu…and my hubby gets a truck

Well, we had no idea or intention to do this today. We woke up and went out to get groceries…somehow on the way, we managed to buy something a little more…

Yeap.

This would be surprising, except it’s happened to us before.

We really aren’t good at saying no, are we?

Where we have a couch emergency

We had to go shopping for a couch yesterday. Our present couch is getting on in years and has been repaired more than once from sudden attacks by River.

There are basically two types of couches in my book. Those that look nice but don’t feel that comfortable and those that look like they should go into a basement and never see the light of day again but are the most comfortable thing you’ve ever sat on.

I’ve always liked the ones that look nice…until I sat on one that was hideous but I felt like I had no bones. The thought of coming home to that every day made my mouth water and  didn’t care what it cost or what it looked like, I wanted it like I wanted my next breath of air.

Yesterday, we headed out to find a new couch because the one we have at home feels like a chiropractor from hell has attacked your back and you get up with numbness in some places and pain in others. In other words, it was a couch emergency.

We ended up getting a recliner that doesn’t quite look like grandpa’s basement couch (see below).

It’s a recliner, though it has a bit of dignity in its lines. Ours is a two seater because our house is tiny and we’d like to be able to walk around the thing and it’s dark blue because we have two dogs and we’re not nuts.

Now, finding this little gem wasn’t a two minute process. My hubby is particularly choosy about his furniture and this search required checking out several stores and sitting on at least 20 couches. The entire process took so long that by the time he found this one, my stomach was starting to eat my lungs and I was cursing all British people in general and my hubby in particular.

Then we heard…it’s going to take 6 to 8 weeks to get here.

Where we might be building a garage…

We are putting a garage on our house. The lack of one didn’t seem to affect my lovely hubby when we bought it two years ago, but having lived through two of our beautiful Canadian winters clearing the snow off his car, he has decided we either move to the equator or we build a garage. Since I am not fond of air travel, I decided on the latter.

Now, after we spent all winter getting a permit for our build, we have two very sturdy construction men coming over on a regular basis to construct our garage. One is stocky and round, let’s call him Gus and the other is wiry and thin but has this massive moustache, the only large thing on his body. Let’s call him Rupert.

Well, Gus and his buddy have been over all of a day and have already transformed our front yard into a mess. Apparently, building a garage translates into making the deepest hole in the ground possible because they’ve been digging away like earthworms ever since they arrived.

To help them dig even dipper, they took apart our doggie fence and replaced it with this orange mess that I know our dogs will get through in no time. Trying to delay the inevitable, we have snuck all sorts of toys into their doggie house to try and entice them to stay in our yard.

Well, long story short, we’re hoping we’ll have a garage some time in the future. Right now we have a massive hole…and a dubious-looking fence.

My pros and cons of a plant-based diet

Almost 6 months into the plant-based diet, I have put together a little list of my pros and cons. I had some questions going in, like would it be more expensive? Would I have trouble adjusting? Can I still eat out? So, here’s what I found out, good and bad.

(credit:Cuisinicity)

The Good Stuff:

  • It feels super healthy and good to eat this way. Every time I take a bite, I’m putting good stuff in my body and it feels like a pat on the back. Just goodness for my body over and over.

(credit:She Said Beauty)

  • I feel better. My body feels better and I know my stomach and insides feel better too. That’s a huge bonus because I used to feel slightly sick or super-full after meals. I don’t anymore.

(credit:Care2)

  • My taste buds have changed. It’s true. A silly green apple tastes like an incredible treat. I have no idea why or how but I love eating things that before were consumed only because they were good for me.

(credit:Tip Top Lifestyle)

The Bad Stuff:

  • I can’t eat out. My hubby has been hounding me trying to get me to go out to restaurants but the truth is the only things that are vegan there are salads that contain two sad little ingredients. That’s not a meal and helping him by peeling large amounts of crab legs at a buffet is not my idea of a good time. We have managed to find ethnic restaurants that do cater more towards vegans but it’s still tough.

(credit:The Family Dinner)

  • It’s more work. I used to eat whatever there was around the house not really giving what I put in my body any thought. Now, on Sunday I strategize the meals for the week and research what we’re going to eat in everything from breakfast to snacks. It’s work.

  • I do miss some things, like cheese and butter. It’s hard to have toast without butter and nothing vegan is close to melted cheese. Those things are tough to replace.

(credit:Bountiful Blessings Market – LocallyGrown.net)

Overall:

I haven’t found it more expensive to eat this way. I thought it would be, but I forgot just how expensive meat and fish can be. So, financially, this hasn’t been a struggle.

(credit:herbs and spice and other things nice)

As much as I love furry creatures, I didn’t do this for them. I did it because I thought it’d be better for my health. As it turns out, you can be a good, healthy vegan or an unhealthy one (fries and chips can be vegan friendly), so that’s not a great reason to continue.

(credit:Nichole Bernier)

So, will I continue? I go to have some blood work done this week and that will pretty much determine if I continue or not. If I find I’m deficient in some vitamins or supplements, I will change for my own health. But, right now, I’m still sticking with it.

(credit:My Raised Bed Florida Vegetable Garden)

 

Where this week is nuts

I’m in the middle of a pretty insane week. It’s nuts at my Day Job because our boss has decided to do an indoor activity outdoors…and invite other centres to boot. Never mind the fact that Mother Nature may not comply and rain on all of us, we have to prep this new idea of his and it’s…well, it’s nuts.

To add chaos to madness, I’ve decided to create a welcoming, food area for our clients at work. We’re going to have hot drinks, cookies and light refreshments…thanks to my wallet and my insane mind.

Finally, at home, my lovely hubby is leaving for one of his therapist conferences and the house is in total chaos thanks to his way of packing (throw everything around until it falls into a suitcase).

I told him to take this joke with him.

(credit:iFunny.com)

He didn’t find it funny, but I thought it was hilarious. Some times, if life gives you nuts, you have to act like a chipmunk…and enjoy a nut or two.

Of permits and frustration

We’re trying to build a garage for our house.

When we moved, almost two years ago now, we noticed our new home didn’t have a garage. This didn’t seem to bother us at the time. The bliss of the new house erased any and all doubts about a missing part. Who needs a garage anyway? Why bother with one?

Turns out garages are incredibly useful in winter. And, since we live in Canada, winter happens every single year. In spades.

(credit:The Globe and Mail)

After living through two winters without a garage, we’re adding one to the house.

This doesn’t happen easily though. First, we had to have a permit. To get that small piece of paper we had to meet with the council of our city (aka: tiny country town) and try to convince them that we were only building a garage and it was not going to destroy the look of the countryside or hurt any animals in the construction.

The council was made up of a gaggle of old men that reminded me a lot of the dwarves from The Hobbit but, in my wisdom, I refrained from pointing that out to them. They spoke for incredibly long period of time, were older than Methuselah and seemed in no rush to grant us anything from permits to permission to leave. It took over an hour to get them to agree to let us build a garage.

(credit: TheOneRing.net)

Once the meeting with the Council was over, we still had to get all sorts of papers, forms, drawings, drafts and money to get the elusive permit. Still, months later, we finally have a very red piece of paper that now has to be placed outside to be seen by anyone who passes by. A permit? Well, not exactly.

This permit isn’t final. A fact that was made abundantly clear by the grumpy teller who dealt with me last week. There are to be at least 5 different inspections at different times by different people at ‘the site’ to ensure that we’re not building a chicken coop instead of a garage on our property. If, and only if we pass all those inspections will the permit be finalized.

It occurred to me that by then the garage would be finished and the permit might be as relevant as a phone booth to a teenager but by this time I had been standing for more than half an hour listening to the growling of the teller and I wanted to go home. I nodded and practically ran out of the town’s office.

Obviously, you’re going to hear more about this delightful adventure.