A City Girl's Country Dream

The Rantings of a DIY chick

website

Written By: Ms Jay - Apr• 06•14

Hey all…I will be changing my website to a free edition.  I am in my last leg of school which has not given me any time to blog as my classes are HARD. I feel like I have wasted money on the blog this last year by not writing so I am moving over to a free edition.  I might come back to the paid edition later.

For now please update how you connect to me by using the URL: http://acitygirlscountrydreams.wordpress.com/

Thanks for your continued support!!

Also I am still looking for another house and will be starting this process all over again.  Coming up in the new house are a media room, a whole bedroom converted to a closet for under $200 (I already priced it out LOL), and a way to live in the house with room for me, my dad, my guests and space to sew.  I am looking at houses over 2,000 sf…downsizing here did not work out for me too well LOL.  I still haven’t found a new job yet but I have stopped looking until I finish this one last class.

Thank you for your continued support and I look forward to seeing you on my new site!!

Until we meet again.

Here is my inspiration for the room closet.  I wish I could take all the dialog out of this video and just show you the features of it.  It’s quite awesome and it can be done for far less than buying the whole IKEA closet components.  I hate that they talk so much about nothing so you might want to turn the volume off after the first few minutes

http://youtu.be/Splci7QVKzk

and I like this one as well.

http://youtu.be/Wr87MEjYBmg

A lamp shade on the ceiling

Written By: Ms Jay - Feb• 13•14

I want to make accessorize my bedroom around my new comforter.

bedspread

I purchased fabric for curtains….but that will be another post.

So I had this idea to do another lampshade project.  This time I wanted to use my Cricut Expression to cut out a Middle Eastern style design and put it on the inside of the shade but guess what?  None of the cards I have contain a design even close to what I want but I can buy two from Cricut for  $40 each.  I am not spending another penny on this thing.  I contacted Silhouette to see if they would give me a deep discount on a machine in exchange for advertising their project through at least  4 planned projects using their machine but I did not get a response from them yet.  I had to move forward.  In the meantime my alternative is decoupage.

I did an image search for Indian vector designs.  I saved them on a stick and took them to OfficeMax and had them blown up on 11×17 paper.

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When you download small designs and have them blown up they come out pixelated.  That is okay… nothing a sharpie can’t fix

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You are not going to be looking at the design directly so you can make the main outlines darker and leave the rest.  sorry about the poor lighting in the photos..

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Everything was cut out

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I painted the back of the designs with modge podge and let dry over night.  In the meantime I wiped out the inside of the shade.  I got this huge drum shade for $4 (with my vet discount).  In the stores these shades were $60 and up.

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After it dried I painted the front of the paper design with Modge Podge and let it dry slightly then I applied it with the design side to the inside of the shade.  I let it dry a bit first because it helps with the paper not wrinkling too bad when you apply it.  That and pre-painting one side helped a great deal.  It had a few bubbles but no wrinkles.  It was not too bad.  After I applied it I went over it with a second coat.  I think three coats of ModgePodge will be sufficient.  Because I used the marker, part of the design bled to the back of the paper.  I am not too worried about that showing,  you will have to be directly under it to see the design on it.  An alternative would be to put a piece of white paper on top of the inside but I am not going through all that.   If you have a cut out from a die cut machine the design would be inside in its entirety and that would look nice on both sides.

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When the lights are out you see a plain white lampshade but when the lights are turned on you soo the designs through the shade.  I love it

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sorry for the skimpy photos…

 

 

 

The Comforter Created More Projects!

Written By: Ms Jay - Feb• 13•14

I used to always buy King size bedding because I liked it to drap over the bed a little more than normal.  I finally found the perfect bedroom set when I was in the middle of renovating.  That was before I got the new bed.

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I love love loved this set.  It was beige with brown and pink and so much nicer than the photo.  I painted the room a “Cherry Mocha” which is a dark rose with a hint of brown to it.  I painted the trim in the room brown.  I then ordered my bed in a brown and got my first bit of bad news…they did not have it in brown…so I had to get black.  Then when it came the king size set was too big for the bed and it was not going to work.  I couldn’t take it back because it took months before I actually opened the package…So dear daughter wound up getting the set.  She is more than happy about that.

I had to go shopping for another bedding set.  I hate this.  It took me 3 years to find a set that I love and then I couldn’t use it nor could I buy another because it was the last of the stock when I got it.    So Here we go again.  Of course there was not another beige, brown and pink set that I liked.  Since I got a black bed I went looking for and found a black set.  Not my top pick but I could live with it.
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I am one of these matchy-matchy type of chicks but of course there were no matching curtains, but there were plenty of black curtains, white curtains and pink curtains, but nothing was turning me on. I refuse to pay so much money for plain curtains, so I went fabric shopping to make my own but even on sale fabric is not cheap.  I finally found some fabric but for a year now its been in my drawer…shame on me!!

 

 

 

Scrub-a-dub-dub ….said no one today

Written By: Ms Jay - Feb• 13•14

I am on break from school so I have been using this time to catch up on some of my house work.  I took a crap load of stuff to the Goodwill, and I cleaned up and cleaned out.  The house is finally starting to look like a home!  One of the things that has really been bothering me is my shower head and the lime deposits on it.  I have tried water, bathroom cleaning stuff, scrubbing bubbles and lime-away…nothing worked so far and when I take a shower water only come out of half the holes.  I been reading on the Internet about using vinegar to clean it so I am trying it.  Can’t hurt…unless it rusts my shower head.

9:00 PM This is my shower head before:

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as you see some of the holes are blocked.

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I used plain vinegar.  I noticed when looking at the photo that it is reduced with water to 5% acidity.  I am not sure if that is good or bad.  This was the cheapest vinegar I could find.  (It was 99 cents) I put a microfiber cloth in a bowl and soaked it with about 1/2 a cup of vinegar.

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I have a basket hanging off my shower rod and I used it to hold a piece of plastic wrap since I was doing this with no help.  Note it is not Saran Wrap, but a cheaper off brand. I will tell you why I mention that in a minute.  I cut off about 2′ or so off the roll.

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I wrapped the plastic wrap around the cloth and the shower head, which I am here to tell you was not easy.  I actually had to wrap a piece of the plastic wrap first around the shower head base then around the actual shower head.  I had to use two pieces.  I kept fussing myself out because I know if I had actual Saran Wrap this would have been easier, since Saran Wrap is VERY clingy, whereas the off brand is not so  much.  After I wrapped it and had a sealed wrap I decided to pour some more vinegar in there.

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To distribute it into the cloth I used some tape to tape it to the shower head good and tight.  I used the blue tape because I don’t want to tear my whole shower head down trying to get the tape off.  LOL that would be a disaster wouldn’t you think?  Interesting story yes, something I want to have to tell?  Heck no!!

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I was up till 2 AM so I decided to check it out to see if it worked.  It was 5 hours later, in case you didn’t notice the time…. and yes I started this project late.  I was so exhausted I decided to sleep in today. I did not get out of bed till 4 this afternoon and the only reason I got up is because I had to get that stuff out of my car and get it to the Goodwill by 6 PM today or I would be toting it around yet another week because I am not going to go after work.   I already proved that this past week.  Don’t judge me…

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hmmmm it looks a little better I admit.  I am all for no work cleaning.  I decided to wrap it up again…this time I soaked sponges taped them up first then wrapped it with the cheap plastic wrap and then taped over that.  Then I went to bed (2:43 AM)  I swear I should have something better to occupy my time on a Saturday night than lazily cleaning a shower head and blogging!

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Of course the first thing on my mind when I woke up was the shower.  I decided to do my affirmations first and then check.  It was 7 hours later, which make a total soak time of 12 hours and more than enough time for a miracle to happen.

I take all the layers off and I find this

 

Although it was much better than when I started out it was not quite the miracle I was expecting.  I decided to get a scrub brush and put in some elbow grease (darn it).

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Now it looks much better but if you look closely there are some holes still clogged.  I am leaving it as is.  Going to take a super hot shower and hope to blast out those deposits.  This is the price I pay for having free water.

As I was about to close out this post something told me to check the Internet to see if I followed the directions correctly.  uhhhh no…not in the least.  To my defense I know I read somewhere to tie vinegar soaked cloths to the shower head.  Let’s not dwell there okay?

Here are the Newest directions…

You can cure your shower head of its grimy blockage with a bag of vinegar. All you have to do is fill the bag, place it around the shower head so it’s submerged in the liquid, and tie it to the neck with a twist tie (or anything else, really). Leave it there overnight and the cleaning will be handled for you.

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Bottom line is I did everything following several directions and guess what?  Nothing worked.  It made things better but did not work.  No miracles here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ending 2013 with a Bang Bang Bang of the hammer

Written By: Ms Jay - Dec• 30•13

In my next renovation things are going to go a whole lot different.  I know I said I would never do this again but lets face it I been rehabbing houses for the last 25 years and I don’t think that is going to end anytime soon.  It would drive me crazy to be in a house that is move in ready.  In the future I will not do this again if I don’t have the money to do it in the right steps.  This was the first project I did entirely on my own (financially) and it was more extensive than any others BUT I DO like how things came out. I  wasted a lot of time and money and did too much back tracking though.  I never had a house that needed to be gutted before so this was  a lesson learned!!

Okay so that was the back story to this story.  In my last blog post I explained that I was having a problem with the floor being spongy.  This posting is probably going to make me sound like a cheap tight wad but I am going to tell the story just like it happened and you forget the prices and concentrate on the fact that this is right before Christmas AND there is a principle involved….Agreed?  Okay so what happened wassss…

The guy (Eric) who came to tighten my bolts on the toilet came over and gave an estimate for the floor.  I would have done the floor myself but  I had finals to do in school, was stressed out from job hunting, went on these long distance job interviews and was trying to Christmas shop, so my plate was full and I could not handle another thing on it…not ONE.

He told me he had to replace the entire floor and I told him no, I did not want my bathroom torn up right now.  What I wanted him to do was to cut out the rotted wood and replace it then go under the house and reinforce it and put a piece of laun on top of the whole floor so I could lay the new vinyl.  My plan was to let him do that then I would finish by installing the left over floor  from the  mudroom and kitchen….. I thought I had plenty left over.   I asked him how much and he said  $100.  COOL!  When can we get started?  He said he would call.

He called me a couple of days later.  My dad was here so I did not have to come home.  I did not get the laun so  I asked him if he could pick it up for me.  I only needed one sheet and it was $19.99.  I arranged to pay Lowes over the phone but Eric never called when he got there (as I instructed him to do).  Okay so I come home from work and the floor was finished up to the layer of laun and it looks okay.  I asked my dad what they did and he said he had no idea.  My gut knotted up.  I asked him if he saw anything they did and he said no he left them alone.  Okay my fault for not telling him to occasionally look in on them to see what they were doing.  I mean once they finished and everything was covered up you can’t tell what they did without taking it all apart.  I gritted my teeth while telling this to him nicely and that I was not happy with this situation.  He said the next time he will watch them like a hawk.  LOL That wasn’t necessary either…just an occasional “look and see” will suffice and if something does not look right call me and I will handle it.  To add insult to injury when I review the security tapes I see they were going through my tool drawers on the porch A-N-D they used MY tools.  And one stood on the porch most of the time texting or playing with his phone.  Probably playing Candy Crush or something.  My dad said they did not even have a pencil!! I was ticked off but again it’s partially my fault for not being clearer on the instructions.

lazy

So when I come home I see they did cut the laun and put it down, and as I asked them, they did not glue or nail it.  I was going to take care of that.  The wood is so thin you can cut it with a razor and the only skilled cuts were in the doorway and that was pretty ugly.  No problem though because it was getting covered up.  This was a really easy job and it took them 2 hours to do.  Essentially I paid them $90 an hour to do this, with my tools.  hmmmph.  THAT NEVER HAPPENED BEFORE AND WON’T HAPPEN AGAIN.  NOT FOR UNSKILLED LABOR…NOT IN THIS LIFETIME.

(more…)

Catching Up…

Written By: Ms Jay - Dec• 14•13

Hi y’all, its been a while since you heard from me right?  I know I know.  I still have a busy and confusing life going on and I still have the mindset that I WILL get a new job, I WILL be relocating to Charlotte, NC or Columbia, SC, I WILL be getting a big boost in pay, I WILL get my bachelors degree and this WILL all happen soon.  I work hard and it would be nice to be rewarded for all my hard work.  I am at the end of my schooling and it is KICKING MY BUTT.  I have sacrificed so much of my time for school and this house and  I will be thankful to be a normal person again.

This weekend I am working hard on my papers, which it seems no one really appreciates the pressure I can be under.  I needed a break so this is my way of taking a break…updating my blog LOL.

Guilty confession: I been working on the house a little at a time.  I still haven’t finished my bedroom ceiling and  I have no idea why since it will only take a couple of hours to complete.

My dad is here and was supposed to be helping me put the house back together but he is enjoying relaxing,  watching TV and being away from what he says is a nagging wife that he been with for the last 30 something years.  He has helped some but for the most part I’ve let him chill out and enjoy his break away from home… everyone needs a mental health break once in a while.

dad

I swore, since I am moving, I am not putting another red cent in this house.  Not a one.  BUT things are not going as planned.  I  noticed my toilet  was rocking so  I called my handyman to come over and check it out.  He said the  floor bolt to the toilet was loose and he tightened it.  He also said the seal was loose and I might have to replace some of the floor. WHAT???     I was all panicked at first then relieved when I thought it was only a bolt  loose.  That was a couple of weeks ago.  Then I had a friend  over who used the bathroom and when they left I noticed the seat was cracked.  It was one of those cheap padded seats so it really was not a big deal, besides, I planned on getting another one anyway but then I also noticed the toilet seat was rocking AGAIN.  I took the cap off the bolt and tried to hand turn it and OF COURSE it broke!!  SHOOT!!!  WHY DO THEY MAKE TOILET BOLTS IN BRASS ANYWAY?  And the floor around the toilet definitely feels spongy.   If I fall through this floor while sitting on the toilet I will be too through!!!  And NO I will not be posting photos of it LOL (more…)

Just Checking In…

Written By: Ms Jay - Sep• 21•13

Okay so here it is almost the end of September and I still have not secured employment in Charlotte.  I am disappointed to say the least.  I have been doing my job-hunting online and I have applied for more jobs than I care to publicly admit.  I realize this approach was not working so  I decided to regroup and my next phase involved networking.  I read peoples profiles on LinkedIn picked a few people whom I thought might be able to help me and called them.  I was nervous as heck but I just told them what I was trying to do and asked if they could help me.  Two said they have positions coming up in the near future and were interested in trying to help me.  One is in computer security and the other in appraisal.  I have my fingers crossed and sending up earnest prayers.  If this is meant to be it will happen…not in my time but in the right time.

Now that I feel there is some hope on the horizon I am on a rampage!   I have been packing and throwing things out and burning JUNK and getting a giveaway pile ready.  My dad is here and is helping me.  I absconded some paper boxes from work.  They are the perfect size, can carry a heavy load and are a perfect handling size.  I went to Lowes and purchased a roll of bubble wrap, a roll of plastic wrap and several rolls of packing tape…would you believe that junk came up to $75??  MY GOD!! I came home and crunched the numbers on the calculator a couple of times and then my dad did the same and yes sir…$75.  I was nickled and dimed!!

I have waaaay too much stuff and I blame that ALL on my co-worker Sheila.  You see, Sheila is a compulsive shopper.  And she is influential.  And she hits the stores everyday then calls me and reports the deals.  Granted, the deals are usually at least 75% off and the final price is usually under $20, BUT (you knew there was going to be a but right?) there are a lot of them.  Buying things that I don’t need just because it is on sale dirt cheap is not a good thing.  That is my story and I am sticking to it!! Darn you Sheila!! (LOL)  Oh and did I mention her daughter lives in Charlotte and her family is pressuring her to move now that they know I am moving?  LOL

I also have a problem with books.  I have a gazillion books.  I went through my books and there were none I could part with.  That’s how it is when you are a nerd.  I have an extensive collection of Indian embroidery and craft books that I must keep, a collection of religious studies I must keep, a collection of computer tech books that I must keep,  a lot of DIY books that I must keep, craft books that I must keep, Feng Shui books that I must keep, a couple of self-help books I must keep and a lot of history books that I must keep and that is only what I have in my sitting room off my bedroom.  I only have one fiction book  in the house…. it is my all-time favorite book Li’l Mama’s Rules by Sheneska Jackson.  Oh God that has to be the funniest book ever.  It is a book she wrote about her personal dating rules and if you are a single woman you can really appreciate the humor in the dating crap we have to go through.

So I been at this all day long and I haven’t even finished the one room yet.  hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh…this is going to be a long haul!

Pray for me!!

Job Hunting

Written By: Ms Jay - Sep• 02•13

Job hunting is not the easiest thing in the world to do.  Thank God I am doing it while gainfully employed.  So how have I gone about doing this?  Well I updated my LinkedIn page and look at the recommended jobs every day, I went to indeed.com and check the postings everyday and then I went to USA jobs posted my résumé and search it everyday.  I found a job I was really interested in on USA jobs and I kid you not, it took me 4+ hours to gather all the papers they needed (military papers, questionnaires, transcripts, resume and cover letter) and to  fill out all the forms, one of which I never did find.  The result was that since I could not find that one form my application was not accepted.  I called the HR person who was listed as the contact person but he was on vacation so I just left a message.  A week later my application was updated to accepted but I haven’t heard anything yet.

To add to my job hunting efforts I went to the city and county websites and the three largest companies in the area.  I have excellent job skills and I just find it incredible that I can’t find what I would consider a good job.  The market is so tight that they are asking an incredible amount of qualifications.   I am still applied for everything that I was interested in that I felt I could excel at once I was properly trained.

In the meantime I have also been checking houses in the area and getting my house ready to sell or rent.

So what have I done in my house?  Actually, not a darn thing.  Why?  Well my excuse is that the offices on my job are being painted and so all the boxes are in use and since I have no boxes I have done nothing.   That’s my excuse and I am sticking to it.  Sad but true.      I have picked up and moved many times in my life but for some reason everyone wants me to stay here even though they know my house is too small for me,  and it is costing me a fortune that I will never see a return on.  All they are thinking is “how are you going to do it?”  I am going to find a job, stay in a hotel till my house sells then rent or buy me a new place.  What’s so hard about that?  I have worked on paying off all my credit and I am almost finished.  I will have everything paid off by the end of this month and then I will be debt free except for this house.

Truth be told, I do have fears with this move and I have to be really careful.  I don’t want to give up my cheap house and job to move to Charlotte and wind up with nothing.  You know how some employers do….they have you get their mess in order and right before probation period ends they terminate you.  That has never happened to me but I have heard of it happening to others lately.  I can’t have that happen to me.  That is why I am ever so careful about where I am applying.

I need a break from job hunting because I am at it for  hours every day.  To take a break I house hunt.    I am thinking of renting  a nice house then twist the arm of the owner to sell it to me if I really like it after a year.  If I don’t like it…move at the end of the lease.  I HATE moving but I know moving to a new city I have to scope things out to make sure I get what I want in the right neighborhood.  What happened to me with this house will not happen again.  Plus now I want to live by the mountains.  I am a mountain or a seaside type of gal.

I have used trulia.com to look for houses.  First I looked at some rentals.

I made the mistake of not putting in a max amount and these two houses came up that I LOVE LOVE LOVE (click the photos to see the rest of the house)

6bd house in Pleasant Hill Road For Rent $2,490
Great home in The Palisades with double rocking chair porches overlooking the golf course and a large deck overlooking a wooded area. Hardwoods, open floor plan, and all of the extras you would expect including, stainless steel appliances, granite counter tops, tile back splash, gas fireplace, island in kitchen, bonus room and much, much more. Hundreds of Executive Rentals at www.trlawing.com

 

5bd house in Pleasant Hill Road For Rent $2,500 Stunning full brick home with loads of upgrades. Main level guest suite, formals. Gourmet kitchen with SS app, granite, tile backsplash. Screened porch off of kitchen and master suite! Media room with Sony projector and 7.1 surround sound. 5-zone 5.1 Audio. Master w fireplace, trey ceiling,sumptuous bath, and huge closet. Wooded backyard for privacy. Sideload 3-car garage. Main level laundry room

Yeah now back to the real world.  My requirements are that the house must have 3-4 bedrooms, double vanity in the master bath, prefer master suite on the ground floor,  wood floors, and cherry cabinets in the kitchen.  I only found one that I really like that was for rent

3bd / 2 full ba house For Rent $1,400 Home For Rent with Stunning 2 STORY GREAT ROOM!!! No other description given for some reason. I guess they are not collecting enough rent to put out the effort. I really like the house though

Then I flipped over to the houses for sale…

I saw this house for rent a couple of weeks ago and now it is for sale.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE this house!!!  I spoke with the realtor, who also happens to own the house  and she is not willing to rent it even for a short period.  It will probably be off the market before I can buy it.

4 bed, 2 full, 1 partial bath 2,163 sqft Single-Family Home Beautifully updated in Wellington!Wonderful open floor plan, freshly painted inside and out, new granite counter tops and tile floors in kitchen,master bath and power room. Refinished HW floors in formal areas, new carpet in bedrooms. Custom stamped patio. Too many upgrades to list.

As I was writing this a friend of mine sent me another listing.  I like it but for the amount of house for the money the neighborhood has to be bad!

4 bed, 2 full, 1 partial bath 2,000 sqft Single-Family Home Rare find! One owner! culdesac subdiv. Vaulted ceilings in living areas. Stone tile fireplace in Great room. Tile details throughout lower level. Large Master on Main with bay window! 3 Lg bedrms up. Nice & Bright eat-in kitchen with bay window. Large Laundry, 2 car garage. Fenced, landscaped, Pool & deck furn. stays. Roof ’12, HVAC & Ducts ’10, Pool liner ’10 & pump ’12, shed roof ’12 *NO HOA*

I have to hurry up and get a move on selling my house and finding a job because if not there will be nothing left. The market is going back up and now is the time to get out of Dodge!! I need to concentrate on finding a job first though. hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

I am moving!!

Written By: Ms Jay - Aug• 11•13

Welp I am going through my house selling everything I can get rid of that is not being used.  I tried to have a yard sale but for the last 8 weeks or so it has been raining so I have had to resort to posting on Craigslist and eBay.  One of the things I am selling is my cricut machine.  I have a few cartridges that I purchased to go with it and maybe someone can use it…especially a scrapbooker.

So you might be asking why am I selling my stuff…is it JUST  to clean out my house?  No.  I decided to sell after all this hub bub.  I am moving to Charlotte, NC.  I want to stay in North Carolina to be around my grandkids who live in Greensboro, NC (an hour from Charlotte), My auntie is building a house in Columbia, South Carolina which is only an hour away from Charlotte in the opposite direction and that puts me in the middle.

I know I know I did all this work to the house and now I am selling?  Well its like this… I did do all this work to the house and it is still too small for me.  Way too small.  I realized it was time to move when a friend of mine gave me a chair for my bedroom because I keep complaining about having to sit on my bed.  Well to make a long story short I have to get rid of furniture to get the chair in the bedroom.  Its ridiculous.  The place is just too small for me that’s all, and no matter what I do I am not going to be able to fit it in.  I tried to love it…now I have to list it.

I am either selling my house or renting it out.  I haven’t decided yet.

Now the problems:

1- My daughter.  She will be 4 hours away.  I don’t like that.  So I am going to have to convince her somehow to move also.

2- My neighbor whom I am guardian to.  I hate to leave him.  I am going to have to commute back and forth to see him because I can’t just abandon him.  I might have to move him closer, which will move him farther from his family but they don’t really visit him.  It won’t be a problem till I move him.  You know how that goes.

3- Employment.  I am scared to give up my secure job to move into a market that might not be so secure but  I am taking a leap of faith.  I will not move without a job first though.

So besides those three major issues…I am in the process of cleaning out my house.  I have stacks of stuff for my yard sale which I don’t know if I will ever be able to have because of the rain.  I have to also get rid of all of my neighbor Louise’s papers.  I have tons and tons of them.  And I have to figure out how I am going to move.  I think I am going to use a POD again.  That has worked for me in the past….

The cost of living is nice there.  I also like the idea of  working in Charlotte and finding a house on the outskirts like Indian Trail :-).

I HAVE TO FIND A JOB FIRST THOUGH!!!  That will be the beginning of the process.

You can help by sending people you might know to my ebay sales. pleaaaaase

The Cricut machine

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=190883184464

I also have a small doggie bag for sale

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=190881895469

and I will have other items for sale…check my store

Hopefully the rain will stop and I can have a yard sale!!

Cameo Project #1- Bathroom Affirmation Wall

Written By: Ms Jay - Jul• 13•13

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I don’t know why I just can’t go for simple stuff BUT if I did I would not be me right?  I had no clue how to use my new Silhouette Cameo die cut machine but I watched the video that came with it and a couple of Youtube videos and I was on my way!  Let me preface this by saying that I have not been paid nor given anything for free by any body mentioned on this page.  Supplies used: (more…)

Cinnamon and Honey (FYI) more than you want to know…

Written By: Ms Jay - Jul• 05•13

Have you heard all the hub-bub about Cinnamon and honey?   Cinnamon is one of the oldest spices known to mankind and honey’s popularity has continued throughout history. Cinnamon’s essential oils and honey’s enzyme that produces hydrogen peroxide qualify the two “anti-microbial” foods with the ability to help stop the growth of bacteria as well as fungi. Both are used not just as a beverage flavoring and medicine, but also as an embalming agent and are used as alternatives to traditional food preservatives due to their effective antimicrobial properties. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), cinnamon is viewed as possessing heat or yang, and is thus used to cure ills stemming from excess yin or coldness. Honey, in this system, is viewed as a neutral substance, balanced between yin and yang. Ancient practitioners of India’s healing tradition, Ayurveda use cinnamon to help heal gum disease, erectile dysfunction, and many other conditions.   In Ayurvedic medicine, honey is known as ‘Yogavahi’, which means “the carrier of the healing values of the herbs to the cells and tissues”. It is believed that when combined with another substance (eg a herb or spice) in a formulation, the special quality of honey enhances the medicinal qualities of that formulation and helps them reach the deeper tissues in the body more effectively.  (more…)

My Vacation

Written By: Ms Jay - Jul• 04•13

I decided I need to go on vacation and so I packed up and got a ticket to California on Delta Airlines.  I had business to take care of in California and plus I needed a break so it was perfect timing.  Delta was  the cheapest but because I did not want to spend $50 to check a bag I went out and got the biggest carry on I could find.  It cost me$59.  Then I got a makeup sachet that will fit in my pocketbook…another $20.  LOL I could have paid more for an airline that includes a direct flight and free baggage or just checked the luggage for $50  but you know me…always have to shoot myself in the foot before I feel the pain.

IMAG0566My flight left straight after work so the previous day I dropped Bear off at the kennel.  On the day of it is storming real bad and on the way I get a notification that the flight was delayed.  This was not bad news to me because I was leaving straight from work so it allowed me to take my sweet time.  The flight was delayed several times and when I finally got to Detroit to change flights  I find out that I missed my connecting  flight.  Delta puts me and 6 others who also missed the flight in a Holiday Inn and pays for taxi fare to get there and back plus they gave me $25 to use in any store in the airport.  At first they tried to put me on a flight that leaves 3:30 the next day and arrives at LAX close to midnight because of a long layover…are they kidding me?  I whined and cried till they changed it to a flight that would arrive in Ontario, CA at noon.  That still messed up half a day but it was better than a whole day.

You would think the hotel would be on the airport grounds but it was in the city somewhere about 20 minutes away from the airport.  The ride showed me that Detroit is not a place I really want to live in.  The hotel lobby was pretty… the room however was not very good and if I had paid for it myself I would have demanded my money back.  I was scared to take a shower in there and I swear there was a blood drop on the bed…ewlll.  I slept on top of the bed in my clothes and took what they call a bird bath in the morning.

I had to fly into Salt Lake City then connect to a flight into Ontario.  Interestingly enough Salt Lake had a smoking room right in the lobby at the gates.  How come they never had this when I was smoking?

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The rest of the trip went without incident.  I arrived in one piece, all thanks to God.  When I got there I did some shopping, got a mani and pedi and my hair done.  I had not done most of these things in a while so it felt really good.  On Saturday I was invited by my cousin who works on TVLand’s The Soulman to their last shows taping.  He gave us VIP tickets to sit in the front row during taping of the show and then go backstage afterwards.  I felt special!  My hair flopped in the humidity but I still took photos anyway…do you recognize anyone?

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In case you don’t know who is in the photos there is Niecy Nash, John Beasley, Wesley Jonathan, and Anthony Anderson…not in any specific order.

I found a house that I love but as you see someone else already grabbed it…

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Later that evening we went to the wrap party in a nightclub called Xen Lounge on Ventura Blvd in Los Angeles.  It was an absolutely beautiful place and my hair held up pretty well LOL….

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I saw Tisha Campbell but I did not ask her for a photo nor did I ask Leonard Garner and I am still kicking myself in the butt for that!  I did get photos with Cedric the Entertainer and Kellee Stewart

IMAG0654    IMAG0653  The next day we drove to Las Vegas.  I thought I was going to hit the jackpot there but I wound up not really playing.  I did not like the fact that money does not come out the machine and a penny machine is really a quarter machine.  I played the penny machine and got one try and was out of money.  What the hell?? A penny machine should have 100 pulls for a dollar right???  hmmmph…not any more.  The temp in Vegas was 114 and it was so hot it was hard to breathe

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We stopped in Death Valley and I got the grands some lollipops that had worms and crickets in it and lip balm that was supposed to be hot (turns out later it wasn’t).  LOL

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We stayed at the MGM in one of their sleep well rooms.  hmmmph…sleeping well was one thing that was NOT accomplished. The room was beautiful though…I must give them that

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My cousins from NY came and we all had a blast.

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We went to the Cesar’s Palace for their $49 a plate buffet.  My camera went dead so all I managed to get a photo of was their chandelier that upon closer inspection saw was all cups.  Pretty neat huh?

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When I got back I went to pick up Bear.  I was hit with a bill that was way more expensive than I thought it would be.  They hit me with a $13 a day extra charge for potty breaks.  For 8 days that was substantial.  I was pretty pissed about that.

Even though everything on the trip had a glitch I did take care of the business I needed to take care of and I had fun with my peeps.  When I got back I found this on the floor…

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hmmmmmm…that really made me smile……If you are one of my closest friends you know what I am dreaming of! It would be nice for it to come true!!

It’s a Damn Shame!!

Written By: Ms Jay - Jun• 20•13

1-I am taking finals this week and I am busting my chops trying to get caught up.  Lesson learned: having the kids every weekend is not a good idea in my last year of college.   Anywho…remember I told you about my sink?  Well I am not finished with it yet.  I got most of the drain taken apart…all  but the VERY LAST PIECE.  The part that is in the sink connected to under the sink.   Since I been working on school stuff every night I been getting up between 4:30 and 5:00 AM to work on my sink.  I figured out if I spray the crap out of the tight pieces with good old WD-40 and let it soak over night the pieces come apart easier.  I been doing this one piece a day.  Now I have this one last piece and this b**ch won’t come apart.  I am about ready to take out the whole sink and buy a new one just to change the drain plunger fitting LOL.  Ridiculous… I know I know…but that’s how I roll.  I constantly shoot my toes to spite my feet.  If you have any useful suggestions as to how I can get this taken apart short of pulling out the reciprocating saw and cutting it out OR buying a new sink, please, by all means, jump right on in.  And no I couldn’t just  leave it.  One is shiny metal finish and the other a brushed finish.  It’s a damn shame I have to go through all this to change out the sink fixtures and have everything match.

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2- You know I have long hair.  ewwwwwl when I took the drain apart thick black slimy soot that smelled like sulfur and burnt hair came out.  what was that all about?  All the melted hair in the drain from years of using Drano LOL.  It stunk and it was nasty & disgusting.  I guess they lied when they said the foam would expand and leave the pipes sparkling clean.  It’s a damn shame to have all that burnt hair in a sink

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3- Guess what was delivered today?  My Silhouette Cameo!  Yay and boooo.  Yay because I am so excited that it came and boo on the timing.  I don’t even want to crack open the box till I get these papers finished.  I don’t want to fail but have snazzy walls.  LOL  I can’t wait to play with this baby but first things first.  Get these papers written then I really have to clean this house.  It is a disaster.  I mean a REAL disaster.

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4- My basement problem.  It is still raining out and it is still wet and flooding in the basement.  I was standing in the yard yesterday when I realized water was running down my driveway like a river running wild.  Then it hit me.  I need a drainage system.  I now know what to do,,,rent a trencher, trench out the yard, lay down some drainage pipe and cover with rocks or hire someone to do the same.  It’s a damn shame I have to go through all this expense just to have a dry basement.  Can someone please tell me why none of the previous owners put the drainage in place?  It’s a damn shame!!

5- I tried to diet, I gained weight.  I tried appetite suppressants, now I eat heartier.  I don’t understand it.  This is going to take drastic measures.  Going to ask my doctor for Phentermine.  I heard it works AND once the weight comes off it stays off.  I know several people who have taken it over a year ago and the weight stayed off.  I am going to ask my doctor and if they say no there is a diet clinic that will write the script and fill it for $100.  I will do that because I WILL have these pills unless the doctor gives me a solid good ding dang reason why I should not take them.  It’s a damn shame that I have to go through these measures but it is summer, I am single and I would love to be my pre-quit smoking size again.

5- And the last its a damn shame?  One of my hens is a rooster.  I haven’t figured out which one yet but one has started crowing.  I hope it is not one of my real fancy ones.  You don’t know the stories I had of my last rooster.  He terrorized me, spurred me whenever he got the chance, chased me in the house and basically ran my yard as if it were his yard.  They told me on GardenWeb to kick him real hard to let him know who the boss was and I did. Humph…he waited till I wasn’t looking and spurred the crap out of my leg…AND he drew blood!  I was too through with him.  That won’t happen again.  First threat and I am getting someone to come over here and wring his neck and then I will finally be able to taste fresh chicken while wearing a feather necklace.  I might throw the head in one of my co-workers yard for  pissing me off all the time.  LOL she will think someone put a hex on her.  LOLOLOLOLOLOL hilarious. Of course I am kidding about that part…that would be grosssss!

They say put it out in the universe and it will come to pass so here goes:

I am going to win $120 million when I go to VEGAS, pay off all my bills, including student loans, graduate college, get my tummy tuck, fix all my tattoos and get a new one, get all the problems in the house fixed, make a fantasy backyard, quit work, open my own consulting business.  Oh and lets not forget lose weight, get a makeover and find me a husband!  Hee  hee.

But for now…I am going to get this sink fixed without buying a new one..  No for now I have some catching up to do!!!

OH WAIT…BEFORE I FORGET… LOWES HAS STORM WINDOWS ON CLEARANCE for as low as $7 I COULDN’T BELIEVE MY EYES!!

My Trip to Lowes

Written By: Ms Jay - Jun• 14•13

So I got detoured on the way home from work yesterday and because the weather was bad I decided to walk around in Lowes till the storm blew over.  Welllllllll any excuse is better than none…  plus I needed some supplies for the contractors coming on Saturday (to build me yet another closet).  Here is what I found:

A channel lock plier set for $9.99. It is officially called a Kobalt 3 piece Groove Joint Plier Set with pliers 8″, 10″ and 12″.   Now I am not sure if you know how much these jokers normally cost but trust me when I tell you that they usually run $15-20 A PIECE.  I hate the expense of tools so whenever I run up on deals like this I snatch them up with the quickness.  I looked these up on Lowes website and I see they are not up there so this is an in store only item and I believe it is a Fathers Day special price item…

kobalt channel lock plier set

If you have low ceilings then you know that having a ceiling fan is a no-no unless you want to chance taking someone’s head off.  LOL  I saw this fan and it would be PERFECT  because it is totally encased and it is attractive!!  It is in the Harbor Breeze Hive series.  Going to Lowes.com reveals that they do have it in other finishes but I have to admit that  I am wayyyyy too cheap to spend this much on a fan so I passed on it.  Well maybe not cheap, I just have other priorities ahead of spending this much on a fan.  In any case I wanted to put the word out there that ceiling fans on low ceilings is now an option…if you are willing to spend $179.  I am sure they will eventually come down in price.

Harbor breeze the hive ceiling fan totally enclosed and cute

I love to paint and I am loving the sample paints they have in Lowe’s.  These were marked down to $1.00.  They are always marking some colors down and I snatch them up whenever I see them.  When I saw this display my heart skipped a beat!!   Also I have a small wall in my bathroom that just does not seem to make sense to pay $15 for a quart of paint for.  It is literally 3′ wide by 7′ high… that’s 21 sq feet of area.   I found 4 of the same color close to what I was looking for on this shelf.  It cost me $4 and I am sure it is more than enough to cover this small wall section.  I picked up some other colors also to add to my collection for crafting or whatever.  I was so busy looking at the paint I totally missed the spray adhesive…I am just now seeing that in the photo  :-(

Valspar sample paints are great to use on crafts

Look at this small square brush by Zibra .  I love it!!  I am too cheap to pay this much for a brush this small though but I bet it goes on sale sometime soon.  It will be perfect for painting trim and I have to say running it over my fingers tells me it is an excellent quality brush.  One day Jaya one day…

Zibra square brush

Last but not least I loved this display of a porch they can build.  I think this would actually look cute on my house.  Sometime down the road …maybe

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That is all on the Lowe’s report for today…

I updated the post on the die cut machine…when I first wrote it I was trying to write it in time so that you could catch the contest so it was a quick partial information post and one of the links had to be corrected for the bundles.  I removed the contest details since it is no longer going on and added some other information.

 

 

Edited Post: Silhouette Cameo (reread if you already read it)

Written By: Ms Jay - Jun• 13•13

106So if you have been following my blog for a while then you know that I have a Cricut Expression die cut machine and I am not very happy with it.  What happened is….I watched the infomercial one late night and I was SOLD. I have to stop watching these late night infomercials.   It does all the wonderful things they claim it will do but you have to buy cards and supplies for EVERY project.  That its crazy. and you spend $199 on the machine and when you open the box, you can’t even begin using it until you buy the supplies.  Not even a sample piece of vinyl or a gift card to buy stuff from the store.  You have to spend money each time you do a project.  It is CRAZZZZY   The cards cost $25 or more a piece and they are only applicable to one project.    I won’t bore you with the details…just know that the whole system is set up to keep asking you to buy things.  I feel like I wasted my money because I’m sorry there is not one project I wanted to do that is worth buying the machine plus spending $10 on the vinyl plus $50 on the card.
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