Chillin' at CRT on Xpu Ha Beach

Chillin' at CRT on Xpu Ha Beach
How I'd spend every day if I weren't redecorating, cooking, sewing and blogging!

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

DIY Don't? Replacing a bathtub and tile

We recently started a new DIY project at our house.  I say recently, although it seems like it was a long time ago.  
We're maybe half way....
maybe more than half way? 
finished, and we're at that point that a lot of DIYers reach in a project.

We're at the "What were we thinking?" point....

The "We should have paid someone else a lot of money to do this!" point....

I know in my heart that when it's finished, it will look amazing and we will have saved a lot of cash, but right now we're seriously thinking it might have been worth the extra expense to hire someone to put in this tile.  

I haven't totaled up the expense in a while, but I know three things.

Even a DIY project, if done correctly, is expensive.

It would have cost even more if someone else had provided the labor.

A DIY project always takes longer than you anticipated.

This is the before shot -
for some reason in the 80s people thought beige tubs and
beige tile were a good choice.

March 2nd - end of day one - demo is the easy part

We hauled off a truck load of debris!

The good stuff - this is a shot of the new tile and the old tile. 
I think it's a bit of an improvement!

The new tub, proof that all tubs should be white.
SuperDave faced a bit of a challenge getting the tub level.

I skipped the wall board before sealer photo,
although necessary it wasn't fun to look at.
Here's the installed wallboard covered with pink stuff that dries red.
This is pretty much my only contribution since demo day.

April 6 - substantial progress on the tile work.
Honestly, I'm glad I looked up those dates, because right now, it feels like it's been longer.  Our house is dusty, our muscles are sore and our patience is wearing thin.

But as any good DIYer will tell you, it's going to be worth it - when it's finished.

SuperDave is a bit of a perfectionist (as am I ) and he's not 100% happy with this project at this point. 

But I told him a couple days ago, "You'll be happy with the way it looks when it's finished (after a few weeks).  

He responded, "I'll be happy when it's finished."

It will be'll see. :)

Much Love & Laughter,




Thursday, January 4, 2018

Some mornings getting out of bed and to work is a real struggle and by the time I make it across town I feel like I’ve put in a day of work already.  This morning was one of those “challenging” mornings.  The alarm clock woke me at 6 am and I had not gotten enough rest to satisfy my body, so just getting out of bed was difficult. Even after I sat in bed for 30 minutes, checked my e-mail, watched the news and had the cup of coffee my hero husband brought me before he left for work, I just wanted to go back to sleep.

On top of not feeling well, my eyes were bothering me and even after finding the offending piece of fuzz in my left eye and removing it, my eyes still felt irritated and I just wanted to close them for a couple more hours.  Our older cat also had a rough morning and spit up in a couple THREE places in my bedroom.  I narrowly missed stepping into the first one I discovered, and nearly lost that cup of coffee cleaning up the mess.  When I made the bed I knocked back a fingernail on the headboard and before the pain subsided stepped squarely into another puddle of cat vomit with my bare foot. I also had a few extra chores that needed done before heading for work so I ran short on time to get myself painted and curled.

With no time left to fix my hair I pulled a small section back from my face and left for working feeling old and tired (and feeling like everyone I encountered could see that on my face).  As I started to pull out I placed my hands on the steering wheel and realized I had not put on my rings.  I feel odd all day without my wedding ring. I figured another minute to run back into the house would not matter at this point, so I went back inside and grabbed my rings and finally headed down the road.

Then my morning got very interesting……

The first thing I noticed was a beautiful pattern of clouds across the blue eastern sky lit up by the bright morning sun.  I wish I could share a picture, but I was driving, so you’ll just have to use your imagination.

The second thing that happened was that before I made it to the first traffic light, a song started playing that moved me to the point of becoming teary eyed.  The power of music is absolutely incredible. And miraculously, God always seems to know what song I need on this type of day.  This morning the song I needed was Breathe by Jonny Diaz.

If you’re not familiar it goes like this….

Alarm clock screaming bare feet hit the floor
It’s off to the races everybody out the door
I’m feeling like I’m falling behind, it’s a crazy life
Ninety miles an hour going fast as I can
Trying to push a little harder trying to get the upper hand
So much to do in so little time, it’s a crazy life
It’s ready, set, go it’s another wild day
When the stress is on the rise in my heart I feel you say just

Breathe, just breathe
Come and rest at my feet
And be, just be
Chaos calls but all you really need
Is to just breathe

Third cup of joe just to get me through the day
Want to make the most of time but I feel it slip away
I wonder if there’s something more to this crazy life
I’m busy, busy, busy, and it’s no surprise to see
That I only have time for me, me, me
There’s gotta be something more to this crazy life
I’m hanging on tight to another wild day
When it starts to fall apart in my heart I hear you say just

Breathe, just breathe
Come and rest at my feet
And be, just be
Chaos calls but all you really need
Is to take it in, fill your lungs
The peace of God that overcomes
Just breathe (just breathe)
let your weary spirit rest

Lay down what’s good and find what’s best
Just breathe (just breathe)
Just breathe, just breathe
Come and rest at my feet
And be, just be

Chaos calls but all you really need
Is to just breathe
Just breathe

Songwriters: Jonathan Lindley Smith / Jonny Diaz / Tony Wood
Breathe lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Essential Music Publishing, Capitol Christian Music Group

And by the time the song ended, that what I was doing. Just breathing, filling my lungs with the “peace of God that overcomes” and I realized it was time to apply Suzy Welch’s 10/10/10 Rule.  What will matter in 10 minutes, 10 months, 10 years?

Being 15 minutes late to work this morning wasn’t even going to matter TODAY!  My boss/job is very flexible, if I’m running late I just make it up or lunch or stay a few minutes later at the end of the day.  It’s not a big deal to anyone except me. So I let it go.

The third thing that happened was that as I got my bags out of my car in the parking lot at work I noticed beautiful frost patterns sparkling in the sun on the vehicle next to me (it was a company vehicle that hadn’t been driven this morning).  It was covered with intricate, beautiful icy patterns that were different on every window.  I considered snapping a picture, but I was in a bit of a rush to get inside because

a)   I was 15 minutes late; and
b)    It was 28 degrees outside

But I took the time to notice and appreciate the icy artwork because I was breathing a little slower and deeper.

The fourth thing stopped me in my tracks.   As I approached the building a large heron flew across in front of me and landed on the roof.  This was worth stopping for a picture – even if it was 28 degrees.  I put down my purse, my tote bag and my coffee and took out my phone.  I snapped a couple pictures as I stepped slowly closer trying to get a better picture. Then I went back for my things and kept going toward the door and the warmth waiting inside.   I didn’t get a closer picture because as I approached, this beautiful BIG bird spread it wings and flew down to the ground behind the building.

But my day had turned a corner as I realized that if I hadn’t had some bumps this morning that slowed me down, I would have missed some beauty along the way. 

Was I still tired? Yes, I was. 

Did I want to go back home and sleep until lunch time?  Yes, I did. 

But my spirit was filled with a restful peace and I was inspired to share my morning. The feeling of chaos was gone and I knew I could make it through the day, one deep breath at a time.



Wednesday, January 6, 2016

New Boot For 2016

Happy January!  I hope your December, Christmas and New Year's was wonderful.  Mine went by in a flash!  A blink of the eye!  We had a wonderful holiday season from Thanksgiving right through to the New Year. And now it's 2016. And I'm wondering how I'm going to get a whole house full of Christmas decorations back in the attic.  With a lot of help, that's the only way it's going to happen this month.

I went shopping for a boot yesterday. 
Not a PAIR of boots.  
ONE boot. 
At an orthopedic doctor’s office. 

I don’t recommend it.  I paid $200 for one boot.  It’s not pretty.  It’s not stylish.  It’s incredibly heavy and it doesn’t match the boot I’m wearing on my other foot.  And it's a sandal - in January!

As 50 approached a few years ago I was excited. I was really looking forward to my 50s. The decade of me!  It would be just SuperDave and me, living it up in our empty nest. We would have peace, calm and visits (frequently) from our adult offspring and grandkids.  After raising kids since 1981 I was ready!

But guess what? 

Living it up is HARD over 50.  I’m sleepy at 9:00 pm on Friday.  After a 40 hour work week, I just want to sleep 10 hours Friday, Saturday and Sunday night.  And then there are the body parts that betray you. 

SuperDave, even though he is super, has had surgery on both shoulders in the past two years.  And before that he had knees and a foot worked on.  He should be almost bionic at this point. We are starting to consider giving up on DIY projects.  Reason # 1 - We’re both miserable for a week due to sore muscles (best case) after a DIY project.  When did we get older?

Four years ago I was diagnosed with tendinitis in my left foot.  I’ve been wearing various braces, arch supports and supportive shoes for four years. I've given up heels and mostly given up walking for exercise. But I delayed going back to the doctor because I could live with it and we had other medical expenses.  In the meantime, I became mostly a couch potato and gained 20+ pounds. 

Enter the FitBit. 

At the end of summer, I decided I wanted a FitBit for my birthday to track my activity and sleep.  Becoming conscious of my inactivity, which was exacerbated by my efficiency, made me realize I needed to get moving.

I started walking.  “I don’t care if it hurts!” I said, “I refuse to gain another pound!” I said. And losing 10 or 20 pounds would be an awesome bonus, if that happens. Not easy with hypothyroidism (another story for another day).

In August, I started increasing my activity.  In October, I got more serious, walking for exercise most days, pushing myself toward that 10,000 step mark.  By December, my foot hurt more than ever, in new places, in a different place every day, with every shoe, with every step. A day standing in my kitchen preparing food and cleaning up after family celebrations left me hurting for days. So, as I promised SuperDave in 2016 I went to see a doctor.  

I’ve got a condition called Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction (PTTD).  Basically the tendon that supports my arch is NOT supporting my arch and my foot is rolling inward.  My back and hips now hurt worse than my foot. This is no fun.

The good news is that the doctor does not believe the tendon is damaged.  Just “dysfunctional”.  More good news - hopefully wearing my expensive new boot is only for four weeks. Then I’ll be back to a lace up brace again. IF all goes well. And we didn’t talk about after that.  

Now I’m dreaming of a day, hopefully by the time the leaves turn green and the weather is nice for walking. I look forward to a nice long walk again.  A walk with no pain.  And I'm hoping there are days ahead when I don't need to wear a brace to go there.

Love and laughter,


Monday, December 21, 2015

Blessed Christmas Tradition

Every family that celebrates Christmas has special Christmas traditions.  I wish I could remember when my favorite family tradition began.  This tradition didn’t start with the family I formed with SuperDave when we got married – it started with my parents and my siblings.

On Christmas Eve when I was a child, we sat beside (or on) my Dad as he read from the Bible.  When I read these words, I always hear them in my Dad’s voice.

Luke 2 (KJV)

1 And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed.
(And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)
And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.
And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)
To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.
And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.
And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
And only then, after we put Jesus first, did we receive our gifts from our parents and each other.
When I grew up and left home, we continued this tradition with our family, with my husband reading the Christmas story to our children. But the tradition still continues with my parents, their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. The children sitting on the floor and in Dad’s lap change through the years, and the numbers keep growing.  It’s usually not Christmas Eve these days, it’s whenever our family can get the greatest number of people in one place, this year it was a Saturday afternoon.  And it looks something like this.

In the days before photography was digital and inexpensive, my mom didn’t take a lot of photos, so I’m pretty sure there are not photos of us as children listening to my Dad read from the Bible at Christmas.  But the picture is there, in my mind, in my heart, because I don’t remember ever having Christmas without this tradition.
And now we have photos through the years, of our children, and our children’s children, sitting on and near my Dad while we listen to the words from Luke, “and it came to pass…..”  And I realize that I have already received the only gift I wanted, one more year with my Dad reading the Christmas story to our family.
I guess it isn’t any wonder that even Linus can bring a tear to my eye at Christmas.

 Christmas Blessings,