Archive for January, 2006

Finshed the bathroom!

Saturday, January 28th, 2006

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IMG_2974_web, originally uploaded by kschierer.

Here’s a rather poor pic of the finished bathroom. I’m very happy with how it turned out. It’s a very calming and refreshing color now. Much brighter and cheerier. I though I had a picture of what it looked like before, so I didn’t take a before photo. Turns out we didn’t have a picture. I did save a piece of the wall paper and paint (it peeled off with the wallpaper) which I’ll scan and post a little later.

Bathroom remodel

Tuesday, January 24th, 2006

Well, I finally broke down and did it, or atleast started it. Chris complained one too many times about the horrible wallpaper in the 1/2 bath downstairs. It was painted a dark maroon from the sink down, with off-white wallpaper covered in small maroon flowers above. Kinda dark for a small bathroom. So last Wednesday I started re-doing it. Got the wallpaper stripped, which was a pain cause it didn’t want to come off at all. Took down the towel bar and the toilet paper holder, which made a real mess ’cause they were ceramic and cemented to the wall. That left nice large holes that needed to be repaired. Took out the vanity so that it could be pained white (it was a nice mahogany color). Then spent 3 days prepping the walls so they could be painted. what a pain in the butt that is. I hate doing that. The painting I’m fine with, but the prep I can’t stand. Anyway, got 3 coats of primer (yes, it took 3 coars to cover the maroon) on the walls yesterday, and also got all the trim painted. Put the first coat of paint on the walls this afternoon, and it looks awesome. I went with a light grey-green color called washed ashore with white trim and vanity. The room is so much brighter! Hopefully I’ll have everything put back together tomorrow. We have company coming this weekend, and I really want it to be all done by then. I’ll post a picture when I’m done.

Giant Jellyfish

Thursday, January 19th, 2006

I was reading this article on this morning about the invasion of the giant jellyfish off the coast of Japan. What I found interesting was not the article itself, but the picture included. I was amazed at just how large this jellyfish is, and how beautiful it is. Boy would I like to see one of those in person. Sea creatures really fascinate me, particularly the large ones.

Back to the gym…

Monday, January 16th, 2006

It’s been forever since I’ve been to the gym. One of my new years resolutions was to get back to the gym 3 times a week. Today was the first day I had managed that. I feel so out of shape, yuck. Did the elliptical for 30 minutes, with a resistance setting of 3, and tried to keep the strides at 100 per min. That easily kept my heart rate up at the top of the cardio zone. Must improve on that. I’ve decided I’m going to run the 5k again in July. I’ve got plenty of time to start preparing for that. I was going to start today, but I happened to show up at the gym while the yoga class was going on, and they really don’t like you to use the treadmills because they’re noisy. (It’s a really small gym). That also meant no TV, so it was a very boring workout with me just watching the clock. So anyway, the point is I’m going to the gym again.

I also wanted to point out this really amusing post on my friends blog. I really can’t believe that this guy is flossing while driving. He must be crazy.

microwave update

Friday, January 13th, 2006

I took the second faulty microwave back to sears today and demanded my money back. The people at sears are rude. Every one of them that I delt with today was rude to me. Starting with the guy in merchandise pickup who was taking the return in. He asked me very condecendingly “Oh, was it the wrong color?” Yes, because all I care about in my microwave’s performance is the color. I then had to go into the store so they could actaully process the return. They said any service rep could help me, so I waited in line at the closest one. when a sales rep became available, she looked at me with a sneer and said “I really have to go, what do you want?”. Before I even could say anything she saw the returns claim in my hand and said I had to go to the department I bought it in. Like waiting for me to ask a question, and then politely pointing me in the right direction would have been a terribly difficult thing to do. The Gentleman in the microwave dept. was a little better. He was trying to be polite. I returned the favor, until he told me that unless I was exchanging it for a new one, there would be a 15% restocking fee. I looked at him questioningly…”Um…why exactly is that?”. “Because it’s not in its original packaging.” How does he know this…I left the thing in receiving, in it’s original box. Then he tells me that it’s because it’s used…I plugged it in and then turned it on, so therefore it’s used. This is where I begin to loose my cool. How am I supposed to know if it works if I don’t plug it in and turn it on? “well, if you had returned it within like a day…but you waited to long so now we consider it used.” UN-BE-LEIVE-ABLE! He expects me to drive 30 miles out of my way for 3 days in a row, when I had no other purpose to go into town? He can’t be serious?

I was able to convince him that it was in it’s original packing, not used, and two days was not too long. What a friggin pain in the ass.

So, now can anyone recommend a good microwave?


Wednesday, January 11th, 2006

Microwave update: Took the microwave back to Sears this afternoon. They exchanged it no problem. got it home, plugged it in, pushed every button, and they all work. Yippee! then i press start, and the microwave turns on. it is loud. unacceptably loud. I don’t want to be standing next to it loud. I’m so pissed. I think I’ll make Chris take it back tomorrow.


Wednesday, January 11th, 2006

Yesterday was a long day. Had to take my car in for service, and run a whole bunch of errands. Bought a new paper shredder and a new microwave among other things. I was completely out of energy when I got home late in the afternoon. Set up the new microwave and tested it out. It seems to work just fine. Atleast it doesn’t automatically start whenever you close the door, so it’s a definate improvement on our old one.

Chris comes home about 7:30. Go to heat him up some dinner in the new microwave, and several of the buttons are not working. what a pain! got to take it back today. I was hoping to not run errands again today. I’ve got too much stuff to do around the house.

the sock eating dryer…

Monday, January 9th, 2006

You know how your dryer will occasionally “eat” a sock? Mine does all the time. I seem to always missing a sock. My dryer has even gone as far as eating a pillowcase. Really. I have no idea what happened to that pillowcase.

Well I had an interesting thing happen today. My dryer didn’t eat any socks, but produced a pair of mittens. I reached in, pulled out a hand-full of clothes, and there on top was a pair of wool mittens. I thought “how odd, we don’t own an mittens”. I take a closer look at them, and notice that they are small mittens…kids mittens. How odd, we don’t have any kids, yet they do seem oddly familiar. Then my mind clicks…my nephew has mittens just like these. They must be his mittens. Why are they in my dryer? I did dry all my niece and nephew’s winter clothes before they left on Jan 1, but I double checked the dryer before they left. It was empty. I have done several loads of wash since the first…no mittens then. I emailed my SIL, and she is indeed missing my nephew’s mittens.

All I can surmise is that the dryer ate the mittens, and decided they did not taste good. So it gave them back, with lots of extra red dryer lint attached.

Graphic Design vs Scrapbooking

Friday, January 6th, 2006

I read an interesting post yesterday over at Design Observer. The post has been around since March of last year, and apparently been discussed quite thoroughly at many scrapbooking sites, but I apparently missed it at the time. The article is an artists take on the phenomenon that is scrapbooking. I found it very interesting, and agreed with many of the points the author made. Most scrapbookers took the article as a personal insult. I’m sure it was generalizations like this that got them ticked off.

It’s at once horrifying and fascinating to witness the degree to which design is being discussed online by people whose concept of innovation is measured by novel ways to tie bows; whose appreciation of photography is ordained by goofy framing techniques; and whose understanding of typography is rather heavily weighted toward pastel drop shadows and generously kerned lowercase script.

And I can understand why…I believe the author did not do enough research into good scrapbook design. This was pointed out to her in the comments, and she did agree that there was indeed some good scrapbook design out there.

The whole article got me thinking about how I interpret scrapbooking. Is it art? Is it graphic design? I think it depends entirely on what your definition of those words are. I believe that scrapbooking is more of a craft/hobby than a true art form, and that for most people it is not graphic design. I also believe that it is influenced heavily from both art and graphic design. There are many pages that I have seen out there with horrible design…way too cluttered with no thought as to the flow of the page. IMO, this is the majority of scrapbook pages that I see (including many of my own pages). We as a community are not trained graphic designers or artists. I don’t claim to be either, and I will claim not to have a creative bone in my body. Does this mean that we can’t learn and improve? Of course not. I have noticed a great improvement in my design technique since I started a year and a half ago. I can still do better, and I strive to learn a little something with each page that I complete. Do all scrapbookers feel this way? No, probably not. Are there scrapbookers who are artists and graphic designers? yes. Anna Aspens and Rhonna Farrer come to mind.

So the other question is, why do we scrapbook? Well, part of why I do it so that I can get some words down on paper to go along with the pictures I have before me and my terrible memory forget the who what when why and where. Part of it is so that I can feel that I’m accomplishing something useful now that I don’t have a go-to-work-in-an-office job. Part of it is so that I have a creative outlet and stretch out the muscles in the other half of my brain occasionally. Does it matter that my pages aren’t perfectly graphically designed? No. Does it bother me that they often lack an artistic element? No. Does it matter that I’m trying my best and learning something? Yes. A big yes on that one.

What’s important to me is that someday my kids (hopefully I will have some eventually) will be able to look back at my books and get a better understanding of who their mom and dad were before the kids came around. And hopefully they’ll be able to look back at pictures from their childhood and not have to wonder why there is an appearingly random photograph of an inflatable dolphin in a swimming pool.