Random 5 for June 27 – Starbucks, teens, memory, house projects, contractors

Different strokes – Most of you know I pick up a Starbucks mocha every morning. I get a venti which is the largest size. One of our houseguests this past weekend also is a SB fan so I picked one up for him. He gets a tall which is the small one. (Don’t ask about Starbuck’s bizarre terminology! Just go with it!) It’s a “what’s the point” size but he seemed to be happy with it as I had my tank of swill!

Teen talk – The granddaughters were here last weekend. They are 15 and as most kids their age, attached to devices. It’s a lot different from having 8-year-olds in many ways but I noticed the speech patterns. There is a lilting rhythm with a nasal staccato rapid fire pattern that old ears don’t always catch. Mostly I got the gist of the topic. It reminds me of when my mom thought I said things I didn’t say or answered a question I didn’t ask. History repeats itself. If she were here she’d be laughing her head off.

Save me a spot at the home! – This week I couldn’t get my car to shut off. It has a key fob that automatically senses when you are there. You just push a button to start or stop it. Dang thing wouldn’t work. I couldn’t leave it running. I got the beloved husband to come out. He slid in the driver’s seat and said “You have it in ‘drive.’ It needs to be in park to shut off.” Well duh! I know that! I told him to get me a room at the old folk’s home. My car is smarter than me.

Love/hate relationships – We are at the beginning stages of a few house projects which may or may not get done in the near future. One is a new kitchen. This is a case where I want the finished product but don’t want the angst that goes with the process. We found out this past week that our kitchen would be a six-week project. We are taking out a useless closet and switching appliances around. When it sunk in that it would mean six weeks without a convenient sink, no range and who knows where the refrigerator would be, I started to rethink my strategy but I don’t have a choice. I am a shorter person and this kitchen was made for an altitudinous giant! I will have to power through. I am collecting take-out menus.

Contractors – Going through the process of finding contractors has been interesting and frustrating. They fall into the same categories as all people. Some are can-do and very upbeat with creative ideas of how to get something done. It’s a pleasure to work with them. Others have that “OMG, this is hard work” attitude with non-verbal nose twitches and ear pulls that you can’t understand. They think they are doing you a favor despite the fact that you are paying them a lot of money. I’m sure this will spark blog posts as we go through the process which will be called “Dante’s Inferno.”

So how was your week?

 

 

77 thoughts on “Random 5 for June 27 – Starbucks, teens, memory, house projects, contractors

  1. When Starbucks moved into our office building and I became a daily visitor, I found the sizes mind boggling as well … no rhyme or reason to it. I got a Starbucks thermal cup, (a discount on future hot drinks at that time), then I took it home and washed it nightly and presented it the next morning. I kept things simple. I really “get” the staccato talking – why? I heard it’s because young folks are used to communicating via text so they’re all about brevity. I don’t care if it’s not important to know what they’re saying, but if it’s tech related, I’m up a creek! I always hope for a slow speaker at Best Buy. I don’t envy you on the home remodeling. My parents were always tweaking things in the house and my mom and I did some remodeling and had painting/wallpapering done and the woman was slow as molasses getting our small house done – it took her at least a month and living out of boxes was exasperating.

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  2. I continue to be impressed that you not only moved, but have taken on projects. I don’t seem to have a reserve of energy for all that home improvements require. I do look forward to your posts! And I understand about the teens and their language. At almost 14 and 12, my two granddaughters are often hard for me to hear or understand clearly. I guess it’s a thing!

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    • Don’t be impressed. I don’t have the energy either but the current kitchen needs work, the appliances don’t work the way they should so it’s now or never. Once in a while I wonder if we should have moved to a brand new home in an over 55 community. However, our neighborhood has character. It’s nestles in rolling hills and the landscaping is mature. You can’t buy that.

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  3. I stop at our Starbucks one day a week to buy my wife a favorite of hers, and the woman at the counter now knows my name and greets me. I thought of you and figured I’d finally arrive in your eyes! I’ll be following closely your contractor search; I’m still getting very bad vibes about doing anything major this year. – Marty

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    • So far we have found one independent that we have confidence in. Finding a kitchen contractor was hard. We have one now but the whole process is slower than molasses in January. We are in 3 months and don’t have a quote, projected start date or even a schedule of when money is due. Needless to say, no cabinets have been ordered and there has been one price hike since we started. No urgency. Nor any communication on why it’s taking so long. If you don’t have to do it, don’t.

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  4. This was a hilarious post. I’m sure the whole dante’s inferno series will be, too, hahaha. Six weeks? You know that’s a lie, right? I had a very traumatic remodeling experience about 2006-2009. You read that right. My kitchen sink is falling apart–the whole set up including the granite, but the thought of redoing it is beyond what I can think about right now.

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    • I get it. My last big construction project was to make our porch bigger. No heat, no electric (what we needed was already there) and no plumbing yet it too 6 months to increase it 5′. Easy peasy and quick. Just extend 5′ on one side. About two weeks into our project a truck drove into a storefront and our builder got the contract but it had to be done NOW. So our project sat. Everything was ripped apart with stones and rubble in the driveway. I was beyond insane! Right through the entire winter. In retrospect we should have dumped them and someone else finish it. I won’t use them again. Ever!

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  5. Our kitchen was closed for two months when we had it remodeled. We had a microwave and a small dorm refrigerator and a coffee maker set up in a bathroom. We survived and learned how to shop the grocery store differently than before. It’s amazing how many single serve items there are available once you start looking for them.

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    • I’ve been strategizing that. The room next to the kitchen (technically a formal dining room but we are not using it for that) may be outfitted with crock pot, microwave and fridge. I’ve been thinking about making some items ahead and freezing. Then there is always pizza (a fav of mine), our wonderful Italian restaurant and a sad look for friends who ask what they can do to help. What I am dreading most is the lack of a real sink. Our powder room and the bathrooms do not have huge sinks and somehow washing dishes there is kind of icky. There are always paper plates.

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  6. Good that you’re collecting takeout menus – I imagine a kitchen re-do is one of the toughest to undertake just because while we all know how much we “need” our kitchen, once it’s totally in the reno stage you feel like a fish out of water. HOPEFULLY your contractor will get the job done on time, no delays, excuses – and you will have your NEW kitchen to enjoy! Gives me the “willies” just thinking about it so BLESS YOU for being brave. Necessity is the mother of takeout (not invention). HAHAHA

    Hugs, Pam

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    • Many, many years ago, I had a complete bathroom redo. I even moved the soil line for the toilet. It took a week (which by today’s standards isn’t bad) but it was the only bathroom I had. Every night the contractor put the toilet back in but I had to take a shower at the next door neighbor. I was so relieved when it was done and it was so worth it! Now I’m thinking of doing dishes in a small powder room sink and microwaving food. Yikes!

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      • LOL Yeah one bathroom in the house would be difficult if it was “out of commission” although nice the contractor put the toilet in for you – way better than a bucket (just kidding). We have some reno we want to do in our master bath but thankfully we can just use the guest bath whenever we become BRAVE enough to have the reno done!!!! Thank heavens for takeout and delivery.

        Hugs, Pam

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  7. I’m glad your car problem was easy to fix. They are like super computers on wheels and not always simple to figure out. I had a friend who rented a car to come visit me. When she got here she said that her trunk (with her luggage in it) wouldn’t lock so she didn’t feel comfortable stopping for lunch. Turns out it DID lock but every time she approached it with her fob in her pocket, it unlocked itself.

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    • That’s a new one. One day I had lunch with a friend at work. Her engine was so quiet she didn’t turn it off. It ran the entire time we were in the restaurant. Then she couldn’t figure out why she couldn’t turn it on. In reality, she turned it off.

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  8. LOL about the key fob! As long as we have ourselves to laugh at we will never be without amusement!
    “Rapid fire” conversation with teens. 😂 Glad you had a good time with them!
    I really want new counter tops for our kitchen and cupboards but do I want the work and expense that goes with it?? No, I want a kitchen fairy that can have it done overnight! 🙂

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    • When I was younger, I enjoyed picking out colors and matching up stuff. Now it’s a chore especially with covid thing going on. I like to see things in person. One kitchen place wouldn’t let us in nor would they make an appointment for us to see what they have. Having workmen in my house for 6 weeks seems overwhelming.

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      • I would struggle to have strangers in the house like that. When we had workmen in the back yard, they left the gate open and Garnet got out. We finally found her through a Good Samaritan on Craig’s list, but it was an awful 6 hours before we located her. People in the house are even more difficult. What if they leave a door open? My husband is very handy and loves to work on things, but we contracted out the basement bathroom renovation to a friend that we knew would do a good job. He also wanted to know about our pets and was very contentious. The cats hid, which also worked for us! Still, it’s nice to renovate your kitchen rather than live with what you don’t want! Things are getting back to normal here, so maybe it will be easier for you soon. I have to feel a fabric, not just look at it, so I know what you mean about having to see things in person. Good luck with it all!

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  9. Does your venti stay hot all the way through? I’m a slow coffee drinker, so I order a tall. I might order a venti if they’d warm it up for me 4 or 5 times. Most days, though, I make my own and warm it up in the microwave every time it cools down.

    Best of luck on your kitchen remodel. I did a full remodel of my kitchen several years ago–cabinets, appliances, counters and back splashes, light fixtures, and floor refinishing. I won’t pretend it was easy. But I actually enjoyed it. I had the sweetest, most competent contractor referred by several of my neighbors. My bathroom remodels, on the other hand, turned out all right, but they were slow and annoying. Different contractor. I hope yours turns out to be mostly enjoyable.

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    • I drink my venti at home so I nuke it when it cools off. When I worked I nuked it there too. Sometimes after lunch if I got hung up in a meeting. I’m not hyped about the kitchen contractor. I just don’t have faith because everything seems like such a big deal. On the other hand, we have a contractor walling off the music room with French doors. He came in with great ideas and is very excited about the project. He always says he loves what he does and that certainly instills confidence. He’s in his mid-50s and been doing this since he got out of high school in various capacities so I feel good about him.

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  10. “…in drive.” You almost became a part of the news when they report that a car ran into a building driven by an ‘elderly’ driver. Elderly I think covers anyone from 55 and up. Glad it worked out. I do not want any projects that last six weeks anymore. I don’t have the patience, but countertops are not too tall for me, and I don’t wear high heels anymore. 🙂 I hope your take out menus work. Last Saturday, we called a major restaurant and were told they aren’t doing any take out anymore. Not exactly the answer I wanted.

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    • We have a good relationship with three restaurants but you really need more variety! Once we get the inside done, that’s it. No more projects unless I’m just changing window treatments or something easy but no ripping out walls.

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  11. Oh yes….my car is way smarter than me as well! Edward is forever beeping at me because I’ve left the windows open or the keys inside…or else he thinks I’m too close to something. He even tells me when he thinks I’ve been driving too long and should stop for a coffee! Good luck with the kitchen renovation! I’ve lived through one (and the bathroom too, at the same time). The end result was so worth it, though! Eyes on the prize, Kate!

    Deb

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  12. A Doh moment Kate! Never mind. All is good and that’s what matters.
    Good luck with the kitchen project. Memories of mine being a kettle on top of a microwave on top of an unconnected washing machine for two weeks. I was not happy about the disruption for the wardrobes either, but it had to be done, we had no space here, so it was a week’s inconvenience but worth it. Kitchen Party on the cards? Everyone helps with the washing up!! Keep smiling. Glad you had a good visit with your family.

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  13. Ha, ha, my car is definitely smarter than me. Phone projection versus CarPlay – different results and it is over 40 degrees Celsius here, so my brain is fried.

    The new kitchen will be worth it, Kate. Happy you had a visit with your granddaughters at last. Have a Funday Sunday. 😎

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  14. Like you, our week was spent talking to contractors but for us it was to gut and redo the Master bath, Had similar experiences as you. I have to really like the people who do the work… and they have to have a sense of funny. Contractors are like looking for houses, I walk in and they speak two or three words and I say to myself “no, just no.” I can walk in a house a couple of feet and say nope this isn’t a match. Some of the people couldn’t even work us in to come and look for six months. Thankfully we left the best to last and they will come look at our project in July. Wishing you luck and a ton of patience, plenty of mochas and margaritas!

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    • We are lucky in that we found someone who can enclose my husband’s music room in July. I have no idea when the kitchen will go in. We’ve been working with a kitchen place and are 12 weeks in at this point with no quote. She ballparked the cabinet and counter top prices but the contractors haven’t submitted their bid for the labor. We are hoping it’s in our range. Sooooo….at this point there are no cabinets on order. We bought the appliances ourselves and they will be available within the next 2 weeks.

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  15. Your contractor contacts sound a lot like my efforts to schedule an ortho consult for Bucky. Some vets just said “can’t be done, won’t see him,” and some are willing to see him and look at xrays and weigh in on what CAN be done to help him. I was really put off by one specialist who kept telling me how impossible it all was. (Which it probably is, and amputation is probably the solution, but it would be nice to actually see the dog before deciding.)

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    • This characteristic of “woe is me” exists in every profession. You remember the issues I had with Molly and the vet not paying attention to me down to the “she won’t take liquid meds so please give me the pills” then she gives 2 liquids (and yes they came in pill form too). You are very lucky when you find that “let’s see what can be done” person in any profession. Good luck with Bucky. He is too young to jump to a severe conclusion like amputation without exhausting everything else.

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