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Oct. 3rd, 2008

housing update - and a new project

Still no word on my secondary financing option for the house.  Guess if it doesn't come through I'll just wait until the credit market mess passes and build my own.  Stupid banks. 

On to the latest pet related project:



A quick how to:
1) Buy old TV at garage sale...this one, a working B&W 13" model, was $5.
2) Remove guts of the TV.  I was careful to keep the functional bits like the tuning nobs, picture adjustment nobs, and the antennae.  Most of the dissection of this model was accomplished with a Phillips screwdriver, wire cutters, and 1/4" hex driver.  (NOTE:   TV's have large capacitors in them.  These store power and can deliver a nasty jolt if not properly discharged.  Please be sure to take appropriate precautions if you choose to take on a similar project.)
3) Discard left over parts in an eco-friendly manner.  I saved mine for possible future projects.
4) Thoroughly clean the case both inside and out.  I used a pressure washer and dish soap.
5) Remove any annoying protrusions that might bother the cats.  A Dremel tool accomplished this in seconds.
6) Optional:  seal the interior with a water based clear coat.
7) Reassemble the case.  I glued the all the knobs and decorative bits back on at this time.
8) Line with appropriate material.  This was a store bought Kuddle Kup just crammed inside the TV.  (KK has worked well so far.  As long as they don't try to claw at it.  I've only had to adjust it twice.) Maybe in the future I'll make some thing a bit more tailored.

Results:  Bianca and Jube (update - seizure follow up blood work is clear) took turns napping in it the first night!  Bianca is in it right now.

Sep. 5th, 2008

title work

quick update....

Uncle Ron informed me that underwriting officially approved my home loan. There are a few title issues to clean up on the seller's end, then I'll have a closing date.
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Aug. 23rd, 2008

LASIK follow up

Just realized I never really followed up regarding my eye surgery. So far everything has been great. At my last checkup I was seeing 20/15 +2. That's one whole line on the eye chart smaller than 20/20, and 1/2 of the next smaller line, too. And I felt like it was a bit blurry that day! On a really good day I think I might be 20/10.

Highly recommended! Dr. Kolettis at the Illinois Eye Center did a great job.
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Aug. 17th, 2008

photos!

I took a bunch of pics.  Some video to, but I haven't edited it at all yet.  Warning!  Lots of pics.  Broadband recommended!
Click below:
Photos!
EDIT:  Basement "planter" might have originally been a built in ashtray?
EDIT "DEUCE": Link should be fixed now.
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Aug. 12th, 2008

latest on the house

OK, I've signed my name about a million times so far. Hopefully the people at the mortgage brokerage have all the documents and signatures they need. I think they are doing the appraisal tomorrow. I really hope they can push this thing through quickly. I *need* to get out and move on.

Tired....long day.

Aug. 5th, 2008

Housing update

Well, I made an offer on a house. And it was accepted! Just have to get the loan done. I could be in the house in around 4 weeks. Both exciting and scary for me. There are a ton of little financial obligations (and one big one!) that I'm just not used to dealing with.  LIke homeowners insurance, Electric, cable or internet (not sure what path I'll end up taking in that regard), general maintenance, updates (their are some very cool 50's elements, and some not so cool stuff from the 80's!), trash pickup, etc.

I'm really pretty thrilled.  I should be able to keep my lot and still get the house.  So, want to know about the house?  Check out this link.  Pictures on the site really don't do it justice.
EDIT:   Link above won't work for some reason.   Just have to copy and paste, I'm afraid.
http://devonshirerealty.com/property/property.asp?PRM_MlsNumber=1099533&PRM_MlsName=PeoriaIL

It's a nice little mid-century ranch.  Brick and stone.  Mostly 50's stuff, but some bad lighting and wallpaper from about 1982, I would guess.  In very good shape.  The lot is not in the city, but is literally about 3 1/2 minutes from here.  It's a strange little un-annexed area.  Well water, mature trees, rainwater capture system, about .6 acres.  The "casual" entrance is from the garage.  A single stall, but plenty big.  Tons of cabinets.  And a built in milk chest.  The builder was the local milk delivery man.  Before my time, sadly.  There's a small foyer before you reach the dining room.  This isn't big, but plenty big for a bachelor.  Behind the dining room is the kitchen.  Small and square, but I've found small kitchens can be quite efficient when set up well.  Huge fridge, comes with the house. Gas range, fairly new.  Downside?  No dishwasher.  :(   Something we'll have to remedy somehow.  Huge window to the back deck and yard.  moving on takes you into a small sitting are, then a nice sized living room.  Stone fireplace, tons of built in shelving.  May stay, may not.  Back wall of these rooms is all windows, and has a door to the covered back deck.  The living room then meets up with the front door and entry.  Tons of built in cabinets, closets, and shelves in this area.  Note, the stone wall along the front of the house is a long planter box.  In great condition.  They're usually all cracked and heaved from the winter frost.  Could probably use some advice what to do there.  Anyway, back to the tour.  The Bedroom wing has two secondary bedrooms.  One big, one more than likely intended as either a nursery or an office.  Vintage bathroom in what looks to be nearly new condition.  Laundry chute!  Master bedroom is on the back of the house.  It has a huge walk in closet with an additional cedar closet.  Walk ins were rare for the time period.  Back near the garage is the stairs to the basement.  Fully finished.  Built in wet bar, planter boxes(?), train track around the pool table ceiling(!), fairly new HVAC, and a pool table!  Behind the pool room is the laundry and....get this...a drive under single stall basement garage.  This place is unique, to say the least! 

Exiting the rear of the house on the main level takes one out to a covered redwood deck. Comes with a home made water feature / fountain.  Rainwater capture is under the deck.  Brick patio with fire pit.  Mature landscaping.  The redwood deck wraps from the rear around the house all the way to the front door.  One can also reach the ramp to the rear lower level garage door, obviously.  

Green features:  Pressurized rain water capture system for irrigation purposes.  Whole house fan.  Main level garage exhaust fan. Oh!  Not green, but definitley funky - a built in air compressor for the garage. 

Whew!   My camera is busted, but once the parts get here I'll take more pictures.  Upon posession of the house I'll do a little walk through video, too!  Just wait til you see how the garage door works....
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Aug. 3rd, 2008

LJ question

Is it possible to have two journals on LJ with the same user name?

Jul. 31st, 2008

on to a new topic....

Hell...I've got nothing. Was going to post a question, but now it seems a bit repetitive. And it is later than I thought, and I've yet to shower. I need to go to bed at a decent hour, too.

Random things:

This could be an interesting week, housing-wise. I'll keep it on the down low for now. If something happens I'll let you all (2?) know.

Sometimes during my travels I notice things. A branch that looks like an animal, a leaf crossing the road on the breeze, a flitting shadow in my peripheral vision, and I wonder if things are briefly infused with some sort of life. Maybe that leaf crossed the road on purpose.

There is a semi-famous intelligent person in the LJ community who's journal I follow. I just discovered this person is an adamant atheist. For some reason this made me sad. Most everyone I know has some sort of spiritual side. It seems that this person is decidedly anti- anything to do with spirituality. Who cares, right? I don't even know them. I guess I was just disappointed. Not that I am necessarily a pillar of Faith.

I had a weird dream. And I really don't seem to dream often, certainly I rarely recall them. It's a bit fuzzy in my mind now. But I was in a crowded room. Something (no idea what) happened. I was the only one in the room to notice or take action. As the room cleared a fairly tall woman with blonde hair remained. I didn't see her there, and was crushed by the lack of action or acknowledgment of the others in the room. As I slumped my shoulders and hung my head the woman appeared somehow, wrapped me in her arms and said something to the effect of "It's me. It's always been me. I've always loved you."

NB: No tall blondes in my life.
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Jul. 21st, 2008

(no subject)

So I've pretty much decided that Jube is suffering from Feline Vestibular Disease (FVD).  I have to say he's doing better.  He hadn't eaten for several days, which was somewhat worrisome.  Today I bought some treats at the store.  Jube took to them with gusto.  I doled them out so he wouldn't make himself sick by eating too much.  I've also rigged up a leash system.  We're going to try it out later, possibly tomorrow.  He really wants to go out, but is in no shape to do so solo.  The FVD info is pretty sparse.  It seems some cats completely recover, some never do.  Some quickly, some over a couple of months.  I think he'll continue to improve.  Of course, eating and food energy is important for that recovery. 

more later...

Jul. 18th, 2008

random thoughts and incoherent ramblings

Where do I know that phrase from? I've used it before. Is it something I picked up, or something I created?

No matter, what matter? I have a very random music library. I just jumped from My Sister's Machine to The 3 tenors.

I am so tired. Now that the time is here to go to bed though, I am suddenly NOT tired. Curse my peculiar biorhythms.

I'm a pretty good speller, but "...rhythms" always seems wrong.

I'm struck with the sudden urge to have some high maintenance girlfriend drag me out dancing. I would reluctantly go, secretly happy to shuffle my feet for a while.

I think I can Samba. I have no idea if I can, really, but I think I fake it pretty well. This has never been tested.

Mike Ness could kick my ass.

I hate my living situation.

I bought a lottery ticket. If I have won, the next post will be from a beach somewhere tropical. Or from space, if all goes well. If not, the next post will be from my couch.

Train tracks that are unused seem lonely.

People like T. Boone Pickens gives me hope.

Working on Saturdays sucks.

Hot weather is nice. So is Air Conditioning.

Should I win the lottery, I will give a bunch of it away.

My shoulder is a wreck again. That would also get fixed pronto.

Who is John Galt?

I'm getting sleepy...that's a good thing.

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