What Emmy winners do the next morning

Relax in the back yard with the dog of course...

Hard work pays off


Congratulations Eric! The only thing more awesome than your winning best supporting actor in a comedy was that your mom was sitting next to you when Betty White read your name.

Canis singularis

So mid-week last week, Chris (husband of Rachel, Brett's business partner) was playing golf at Swope Memorial when a dog started following them around the course. At one point she climbed up into the cart and went to sleep. No collar, and nobody at the clubhouse seemed to know or care anything about her. Even though he's not totally a dog guy Chris didn't feel like he could just leave her there, so he brought her home.

She's gotten along fine with Rachel's lab Lucy, and she's been good to the kids, but Maya (who just turned two) seems to be a bit afraid of her, so the search is on to find her a home. She's been to the vet and he's guessing her at 6-9 months old. She's in good shape and some sort of lab mix, I'm guessing with rhodesian ridgeback as that hair stands up on her back when she gets excited and barks. A beautiful face, tan with a black muzzle. She's very sweet, wags her tail constantly, and knows enough to go to the bathroom outside.

Last night was another wine tasting at their house. All California wines, all delicious by the way. Anyway, by the end of the evening we were all quite comfortable. I was fine to drive, but some how on the way out said "we'll take her home for the evening" and off we went.

She was a good girl, slept with us just fine, didn't chew on anything, and was really generally quite nice. And Alex was visably irked the entire time.

He's a social boy. Sure, he tends to want to meet people first, like at the dog park, but then he's thrilled to run and play with the dogs there. But we've gotten the idea since Jack's passing that Alex really is perfectly happy to be an only dog.

He and nameless girl dog got along fine. There was no fighting, but her one overture to playing was met with indifference. He just seemed tense.

We took her back this afternoon and tonight he seems to be back to normal. Relaxed, but kind of sleepy, probably from a day spent trying to figure out what was going on. Strangely he never seems like this when Prada comes to stay, so I don't know what was going on. I do know that while we've talked about a second dog (for company, which we thought he'd like), we're in no hurry now.

Thats quite a basket

Linking and looking around like I do, I found this. Its the Sullivan console from Jayson Home & Garden. 55 by 16 by 30, $995. Love it.

A lifetime ago

My friend Scott, who I've known since the 8th grade, was over in Kansas City, Kansas today. We both live in Kansas City, Missouri now, but we're KCK boys originally. He was early for an appointment and killing some time driving around, so he cruised by the house I grew up in, which is on the market with a pending sale.

It was dark brown with stone trim when we lived there. There were originally huge white birch trees on either side of the walk, but they got some tree disease and had to come down. The replacement must have come from a later owner, I don't remember my parents planting anything after.

It's strange to see it now, not because of whats changed, but because of what hasn't, like the cabinets in the kitchen. The walls had a black and white paisley wallpaper and there was a brick patterned vinyl on the floor, otherwise its untouched. To the right was the big bar cabinet where I learned to mix my dad's Chivas and water, the beginning of my affinity for scotch. Oh, and that pendant where the table goes was red. Painting it to match the walls was a good idea.
I'm really surprised that nobody has ever pulled out that paneling or those fake beams. The pinkish carpet looks bad, but its way better than the olive green I used to flop down on to watch TV.

Most shocking of all is the asking price of 110K, for a 4 bedroom 2 bath house. I sold my 2 bedroom 1 bath bungalow in Brookside (not far from where we are now) 10 years ago for 112K. Location location location, it really is true.

I've said before that I'm not sentimental about houses, but seeing it again does give me pause. A lot of things went down within those walls, mostly good things, a few not so great. Like any house I suppose.

Resto Fall Collection - My picks

The Resto catalog came today. Actually, two came, oddly. Either way, there were some good things, and some things I just thought were kind of silly. (RH, we can rip the bindings off our own books, tie them together and dip them in tea. For far less than 29 bucks.)

In no particular order, my faves:

Digging this oak side table, especially in the smaller size

Not exactly a new offering, but I could find a spot for this column table as well.

I didn't think I cared for this wall lamp at first, but the more I look the more I do.

Is it me or are chesterfields looking really good lately. It says this comes in all fabrics, I SO hope that includes black leather.

This planisphere print isn't exactly new either, and it's got to come down from its price of $995, but I love it and know exactly where I'd like to hang it. 55.5 inches square. Love.

Maybe its because I've seen these "french postal desks" at the Porte de Vanves market in Paris, but I like it a lot. Would be great in a stray corner or spare bedroom. I'd recover the seat in dark leather rather than the tan.

Digging this too, although there are far better choices than oatmeal linen.

There were a number of other things I liked as well, including a couple new bath cabinets in oak with an antiqued gray finish that just might work, say, in a black and white marble bath. Maybe. I'll have to see when we're done.

Farmers Market

The last time I thought to go to the farmers market it was early summer, and there wasn't much there. Yesterday Brett and I were up early for the American Cancer Society's Bark for Life (my office participates), so after bringing Alex back home we ran down to the River Market for some vegetables.

We should do this all summer, I don't know why we don't think of it. All you see in the pictures, plus some lettuce and cilantro that are in the crisper and I don't think we spent ten bucks.

I need to undo my pants *photo update!*

Lobster cake
Sea bass & risotto
Flourless chocolate cake & chocolate orange cheesecake

Brett and Rachel had a client who is a chef, and tonight he paid his bill with a dinner. Eleven of us gathered at Rachel's around 730pm. We started with a glass of prosecco and then enjoyed:

-Smoked lobster cake with a chipotle mayo and pickled jalepeno/onion/tomato salad.

-Chilean sea bass in a lobster cream sauce with asparagus truffle risotto.

-Snapper with a tomato gastrique and a tomato pineapple relish.

-Beef tenderloin (with a sauce I can't remember at the moment) and wild mushroom mashed potatoes.

-Rack of lamb in a goat cheese demi glace and roasted potatoes with roasted garlic and sauteed green onion.

-Flourless chocolate cake with liquored cherries and chocolate orange cheesecake.

There were wine pairings with each course and lots of laughter, and every single thing that was set in front of me was delicious. My ass is kicked, but in the best possible way.

It's Brett's big day

Happy birthday Baby!

Loose wires

The electrician is here today running wire and installing recessed lights and what looks to be a very capable and quiet Panasonic exhaust fan. Hardiebacker is sitting in the garage awaiting installation on the floor, and the Schluter shower kit and floor tile are here and ready when we are. Moving the ball down the field.

Confidential to Mrs. B.

The tudor around the corner is lovely, it just needs some love. Everyone could have their own room and you'd still have one left for guests. Seems like a lot of half baths when you count them but it's probably very convenient to live with. Just sayin. =)

Who loves California? I do!

Bare bones

Demo was not completed over the weekend, but not for lack of trying. The minor plumbing complications caused us to not be able to get the sink and toilet out until after the plumber came. That happened today, so we're ready to clear the rest of the room.

Our lack of a power saw also proved to be a handicap in getting out the studs around the shower. They'd probably come out with a few good whacks from our trusty sledge hammer, but after two days of work neither of us had it in us.

We're taking one day off this week to complete everything before they pick up the dumpster and I don't think we should have any problems getting everything completely stripped down.

The next photo you get should show a perfectly empty room. I am pleased to report my plastic and tape job seems to have kept the dust out of the bedroom, save for the paw prints.


Here's a few photos from yesterday while we're on break. I'd forgotten how horribly strong our plaster-over-drywall walls are.

Except of course the enormous rotted chunk that came down all at once. That grab bar kind of made me laugh because it was way too heavy to carry. At some point it broke in two and we got it out to the dumpster.

Speaking of the dumpster, someone has tossed in their bag of dog poop each morning. Not that I care, I just find it funny that each day has greeted us with a bag of foreign crap.

We've done well taking things down without disturbing the new bedroom walls on the other side, with the exception of one screw head-sized perfect circle of spackle which popped off in the bedroom. Easy fix.

There are of course a couple of hiccups, in the form of two vent pipes revealed when the walls came down. One is in the shower wall that needs to move about 8 inches west, and one is right where the medicine cabinet needs to be. Frustrating, but if thats the worst thing that happens we're incredibly lucky. So far there does not appear to be any rot that can't be dealt with. One thing we have learned: rotting wood smells awful. Things are dryer today so its much better.
Today has been all about the floor, and the pneumatic impact hammer we rented. Tile over a nearly two inch mortar bed on metal mesh. Hellish in some ways, but we've made surprisingly quick headway. Hopefully the shower bed comes out just as well.

And we're off

We have one unblemished sink basin,
And one 12 yard roll-off in the driveway.

That means its Demo Weekend at Chez Malaise! I had a few spare minutes at work today so I typed up a whole schedule of what to do when. We spent the evening moving some stuff around and cleaning up a bit, followed by removing a number of doors. Tomorrow starts with a trip to Lowe's (and a coffee run) and then its hammer swinging time. The plumber is scheduled for Tuesday morning to move pipes, and the electrician is either Monday or Wednesday for all the wiring. We've promised them both a room stripped down to the studs so there's no choice, we go until we're there.

I have no doubt we'll find a bit of rot and mold, but the entire bathroom is sitting on a nearly 2 inch pad of concrete so hopefully the damage is only in the walls and not the subfloor. Cross your fingers for us.

Here we go

"Moral disapproval alone is an improper basis on which to deny rights to gay men and lesbians." - Chief U.S. District Judge Vaughn Walker

Proposition 8 has been overturned in California. The entire ruling is available online, and while I plan to read it, I thought the above quote summed it up nicely. The appeals process has already begun and I expect the entire battle will just get uglier and uglier. But at least for today, we have something to celebrate.