Friday, 30 January 2015

How many tattoos do you have? Part thirty three - the bag rooster

I'm going to be late for work, and ran out of scheduled Friday tattoo posts so here's a very shitty picture of my rooster tattoo, one of the first pictures I posted on instagram ever.

The rooster was taken straight from a bag I bought in a Mexico City market. It's super folky looking and cool. The bag reminds me of the day I went to Casa Azul (Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera house). After touring around there we hit a huge market (where I was very popular because of my dreadlocks...there were a ton of Rastafarian Mexicans there for some reason?) and I bought this bag from a couple of really cool university students.

The entire experience was great, and the bag was my only souvenir from that day, other than a couple matchbooks and a compact mirror I bought with Frida's face on it.

And so yeah. I got this tattoo.

It wasn't terribly painful but I felt bad the entire time because I know I have the super hard to tattoo body type, wide hips small waist. Plus all the dudes I work with were around and one of them kept teasing me because he could see my butt and I got embarrassed.

Anyway yup, little folky rooster.

That's the story.

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

DIY toilets part two plus a panic attack

When we were at the hardware store looking at white paints I saw chalkboard paint, glow in the dark paint and a magnetic primer that you could put under any color and turn anything into a magnetic wall. I would like to purchase all of these please, and create some kind of spooky glowing chalkboard magnet room.

After installing our very own toilet on Saturday we took a look at the old clunker in our ensuite. We flushed it to see whether it would still make that faint "water running" noise and noticed the seal around the bottom become damp. And then a drop or two of water leaked out. HOW LONG HAD THIS BEEN HAPPENING?

So guess what we did.

Monday, yesterday, after work we drove back over to Costco and bought another low-flow magical easy install toilet. Except this one didn't go so smoothly. We did everything great ... but since the flooring in that bathroom is this like half inch thick tile, when we set the thing down it didn't set properly. It's hard to explain, wait let me find a diagram.

So at the bottom there, there's the flange, which is the conical dealy. This sits on a pipe that pretty much just comes out of the floor. In the first bathroom it was level with the flooring, but in the second one it was lower than the tile, set in concrete. The next thing, that yellow circle, that's wax. A fucking huge circle of wax. Now the deal is, the wax sits on the flange, then you pretty much just squish the pipe from the bottom of the toilet into the wax and that's your seal. 

The first time we set the toilet down it didn't even TOUCH the wax. So we had to go out and buy an "extra thick" wax PLUS another one that sits on top of that one. 

Yeah aren't you glad you're reading this blog right now? Welcome to terriblehomeimprovements.com

The worst thing was before we figured out it was just the wax ring being too low, we thought it was my fault for telling Ryan to set it down before we were certain it was centered. Because I couldn't see a damn thing and we thought somehow I said to set it down and then the wax moved or something. Okay it was really hard to see! I was trying! 

Anyway

then I had a panic attack. 

WHY

WHY 


I hate them so much. 

We figured out something was wrong, probably my fault and we were like "okay let's go to the store and ask someone what they think we should do."

Right? Not a huge deal. 

Ryan decided to eat some of the amazing ramen he had made earlier in the night. Oh yeah by the way it was like 8:30pm by this time. He asked if I wanted some but I weirdly didn't. 

I just wanted to go sit on the floor in the bathroom for a minute. 

Oh. Because I am crying now. 

Why am I 

I can't breathe. Shit. 

Calm down, calm down. 

Hyperventilating and tears streaming down my face. Try to get through it without drugs. Calm down, you're fine. It's ok. 

It's getting worse. 

Worse. 

"RYAN!" I called out, trying to sound normal because the kid was in the other room and he has no clue about this stuff.

He didn't hear me. 

"RYAN!" I yelled again, my voice definitely sounding weird. 

He heard me that time, came running in still holding his soup bowl. 

"Can you get me my bag?" I asked, totally sobbing and breathing so fast.

He did and I took an ativan. He went to the store and I sat on the floor hugging my knees and squeezing the straps of my backpack for the few minutes it took for the thing to dissolve under my tongue. 

And then, eerily calm. 


I took a selfie a few minutes after with the caption "life tip: never have a panic attack". Guess I just needed to make light of it and hear from people who had been there. And a lot of people wrote sweet comments. Thanks to all of you.



Anyway long story short, the double wax thing worked and it's all good and whatever, it's done. And now we have two amazing new toilets in our house and we did it all by ourselves and it wasn't that bad...for the most part. 

I got some new shelfy things and hooks and I'm going to find some kind of art for that room and maybe put glowing magnetic chalkboards all over it.

It's going to go from a secret ugly pee dungeon to a cute bathroom in no time.



Monday, 26 January 2015

DIY weekend

Well we certainly had a productive weekend, Ryan and I. Friday afternoon I needed to buy some soy milk, and we decided to get it at Costco, because, you know, I needed three for the price of one. Somehow we ended up looking at toilets.

I don't know, it happens when you're an adult I guess. I took a picture of it happening, which might actually subtract some of the "adult" from the equation. Not sure.


Anyway after a phone call to my super helpful boss who assured us it was easy to install, we bought one. It was late Friday evening when we got home so we decided to leave it in the living room overnight. But we were too excited about our new toilet so we took it out of the box so we could look at it.

The kid thought we were crazy and arranged a sleepover for the next day. 


That night I cracked open my new Drawing the Head and Figure book to the first page and tried drawing some simple heads. Somehow they turned out rather creepy. I guess that's just how I draw?
 
 ---

Saturday we brought T-dog to the vet about his weird foot thing and it was just as we thought. He had a cyst between his toes but it burst internally. (EW) and then the gunk spread under his skin and caused an infection. (EWWW) So now I'm feeding him gigantic pills twice a day (thank you, peanut butter) and bathing his foot and applying million dollar gel (that I assume is made of diamonds and Cher's tears) to the foot three times a day. So FUN!

AW, okay, he's worth it.

---

When we got home we changed into our worst clothes, watched some youtube videos on toilet installation and got to work. It really wasn't that bad or that difficult, considering neither of us had any idea what we were doing at all, and the instructions that came with the thing were ... vague, at best.

Go team!




I actually did help a lot, I didn't just sit around taking pictures of Ryan's plumber's butt but I couldn't help myself. It went great. And it works great. And there was no OH SHIT moment. (No pun intended, I shit you not.) (Pun intended.)

Everything is fine. Which is what you want when you've installed a toilet in your house.

---

Sunday we picked up the kid from his friend's house and went for brunch at a cute old-school cafe. Afterwards, still on a home improvement high from Saturday, went to a store and bought ourselves a can of white paint and a bunch of shelves and hooks and other little organizers. We got home and while I painted the trim in "my" bathroom, Ryan set up a shoe rack and touched up other paint around the house.

And then we all kind of hit a wall. The kid got a fever, plus he has a torn tendon in his leg already and is on crutches so he was out. Ryan and I just kind of ran out of steam. So we all sat around and watched the Simpsons and Family Guy and Brooklyn Nine Nine together.

And I drew more creepy faces.



Yeah ... I'm so glad I can have a sense of humor about all this drawing because if not I would be totally discouraged and quit. I have a gigantic sketchbook to fill with practice heads if I want. Soon my creepy faces might start looking like humans rather than aliens.This is literally my second time trying to draw people seriously, maybe in my life, so it's not that bad. I guess. Whatever. I don't even care. Shut up.

Saturday, 24 January 2015

How many tattoos do you have? Part thirty two - C'S GET DEGREES



This one. Ha. I got it after receiving my diploma in the mail from the University of Victoria. I think a lot of people get the wrong idea about this, I didn't get Cs. In fact, I was nearly a straight A student.

My reasoning for this tattoo is more to remind myself that anybody can get a degree. You don't need brains or money even. You can get loans and coast by and still have the exact same qualifications I do. Nobody cares, unless you're going to grad school afterwards, nobody will ever look at how well you did in those classes.

You know?

Nobody is better than anybody else. Not to not be intimidated by people because of where they are in their lives. Anybody can get anywhere with the right circumstances.

My boss, Gerry Kramer did this one. Yes. I have a LOT of tattoos from that guy!

Friday, 23 January 2015

dog stuff

Oh having a pet is marvelous. There's the unconditional love they give, the cuteness, the dog-hugs, the funny things they do with their little personalities. There's the endless photo ops and the weird knowledge that you've made a connection with a being of another species, which is pretty amazing if you think about it long enough.



It is also tough. The responsibility. The knowledge they're not going to be around forever and it's YOUR problem. That's the difference between having a family pet when you're a kid and when you're the adult. You have to be the one to determine when it's time to take it to the vet for the weird ear thing, you have to pay for and then administer the medications. You have to be responsible for the poop clean-up. The walks. The overall health. The food allergies. The broken neck. The mental health. Is he happy? You have to determine that.



Tank is doing ok right now. He got a weird cyst between his toes, which has happened before, it's very common for bulldogs. This time, though, rather than healing on its own it has become a monster. There are weird pink lumpy bits that have emerged over the last couple days and he lost all the fur and it keeps bleeding, it's gross. It still doesn't look infected but something has to be done because it looks like it would hurt. Although Tank barely seems to notice. But he is laying with it out like that so who knows.

He's tough. He had a broken neck a few months ago for goodness sake, I guess a little foot problem is nothing compared to that.

So off to the vet we go again.



It sucks, yesterday Ryan found Tank's birth certificate (yes we have one, he's a pure bred fancy pants dog) and he's turning nine in May. NINE!! That's getting WAY up there in bulldog years.

It's so hard to know what to think about him. He is definitely slower than he was and sleeps A LOT, but he doesn't seem like an "old dog" like some old dogs do. He's not grey or anything like that. He still has a puppy face and does super cute head tilts when you say a few magic words.

But then he gets a weird foot thing and it turns disgusting and doesn't heal well. And he moans when he can't get comfortable in his bed. And he doesn't seem to like quick-paced walks anymore, he'd prefer a casual stroll where he stops and smells every single thing ever. You kind of have to drag him along. Unless there's a kitty nearby, then he's in full puppy mode again.

Look at this face! This was four days ago. Is he a man or a baby?



I can't tell if this is meant to be a depressing post or an ode to the love I have for this funny little guy. Both I guess. Having a pet makes me sad a lot more than it used to.

Yup.

Dogs.




Reading in 2015 - Book One: Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell




I failed at hitting the 50 books in a year mark in 2014 by A LOT. I'm going to try it again this year. I love reading but sometimes I just don't feel like it.

This is a YA novel about two teenagers who are thrown together by accident and totally fall in love in only that way teenagers can. Which sounds terrible and cheesy until I tell you the rest: they are both from weird messed-up families and they shouldn't be together because society says so...I am doing a terrible job of selling this book, aren't I?

It took me WAY longer than it should have to read, I'm pretty sure it's a super quick read, but the file I ... uh ... "found" online was weird and would only display as 3 or 4 sentences per page. And my Kobo did not like trying to keep up with my fast fingers so I kept accidentally turning too many pages at once and then I would get frustrated and rage-quit the book.

But that's not the book's fault. I thought it was great. I loved the two main characters, Eleanor and Park. They were both cool and dorky, insecure and strong, and you just rooted for both of them the entire book. I especially enjoyed reading about their families.


The experience was a -2/10 for me unfortunately because of the stupid page-turning situation but the book I'd give an 8/10, as long as you don't mind a little bit of teen angst.