Every Friday I say to myself, “I’m going to write a blog post tonight,” because what else is there to do on a Friday night when you’ve already exhausted all your Netflix / DVR marathon options? But I’ve come to learn that with our new home comes a never ending list of shit to do. Laundry, vacuum, pick up Chunk’s toys, pick up all the other random crap lying around the living room, load/unload the dishwasher, weed the yard, shop for groceries, etc. You might be saying, “Aside from the yard, didn’t you have to do all those things in NYC anyway, you gross slob??” Well, yeah sort of, but not really. We paid per pound to have our laundry done and folded by the laundromat down the street, cleaning up knick-knacks around our 400 square foot studio took all of ten minutes, and we rarely had to do dishes since we were almost always eating out of take-out containers.
I’m not complaining about the chores (OK, maybe I am a little). It’s just taking time to acclimate to our new home and our routine here. We’d probably have an easier go of it if we did a little bit at a time throughout the week, but housework is about the last thing either one of us want to do after a long day and commute, so we leave everything to the weekend. It’s not that I’m a slave to my house (OK, maybe I am a little). Life has been full of changes, large and small – I just haven’t had the time or motivation to put some cohesive thoughts together on them. But a life not worth blogging about is a life not worth living, or something like that right? (Just kidding, Instagram is what gives life meaning, not the blog, and I blow that ish up on the regular.)
So here we go, a brain dump of what’s been going on in Casa URB so far this summer (in no particular order because that would just be too much thinking right now):
I have a new job!
This is probably my biggest news and most dramatic change this summer. I usually don’t like to talk about my work in detail on the blog because you never know who’s reading and the internet is forever. So if I sound cryptic, that’s the paranoia talking. I’m still in accounting/financial reporting and still in NYC (let’s not get crazy), but my new job is in a new industry. Whereas I’ve spent my eight year career in banking and financial institutions, my new gig is at the Hudson Yards development project on Manhattan’s west side. (Check out the uber cool Hudson Yards website for details and pretty pictures.)
Though the accounting skills are transferrable, it’s been challenging (in a really good way) to learn the ins and outs of the real estate/construction industry – a much needed spark in my daily grind. Plus, while I never had a personal passion for banking and financial markets, my affinity for NYC is no secret. It’s amazing to be part of a team that is literally creating a new NYC neighborhood and markedly adding to the city skyline.
We have our own car!
Up until this point, Mr. S and I had been commandeering my parents’ car to get to and from the train station every day. My parents have a second car, so we weren’t leaving them stranded, but I had moments of high school déjà vu whenever I had to ask, “Hey, can I borrow the car?” (And we thought buying a house would make us adults…we were wrong.)
We often used Zipcar when we lived in the city and treated every rental as if it was a long-term test drive, knowing that a more permanent car situation was in our future. The Volkswagen Golf was at the top of our list, but there was that one time when our selected car was not available for our reservation and Zipcar made it up to us by letting us take an Audi A4. That car drove like buttah and single-handedly changed Mr. S’s life behind the wheel.
Mr. S’s brother, J, works at a car dealership so we gave him the heads up on our budget and what we were looking for – not too small but not too big, reliable in the winter, and good-looking. That last criteria was where Mr. S and I could not agree. I favor rugged, boxier SUV styles – Honda Element, Kia Soul, Jeep Wrangler. Mr. S can’t stand them. Whenever I point one out and say how cute it is, he groans and wonders why my obvious taste in good-looking men doesn’t apply to vehicles. I married a modest man.
Two months later and we are the proud lessors of a Volkswagen Passat. With J’s friends and family deal, leasing a new Passat was more affordable than buying a used VW. But the real clincher is that the Passat is built on the same frame/model as our beloved buttah-ry Audi A4.
We are going to be a one car household for the foreseeable future (i.e., until we start fighting over the thing), and it’s been working out just fine since Mr. S and I have similar schedules and commutes during the week. We’ll see how long that lasts…
We celebrated Chunk’s 5th birthday!
Could be his 4th or 5th or 6th birthday…we’ll never know for sure, but we’ll go with 5 this year. To celebrate, we took him to the local park to watch the ducks. Plush ducks are Chunk’s favorite toy, always ripping out the squeaker in record time. Needless to say, we were eager to see how he’d react to the real thing (don’t worry, no real life ducks were ever at risk of getting their real life squeakers/quackers ripped out).
We also gifted Chunk a new water toy. Last summer, we discovered how much Chunk loves playing with the sprinkler, so this summer we got him an overpriced doggie version. We are suckers.
We cleaned out the sun room!
Ok, this might not sound like that big of a deal, but the sun room has essentially been a junk yard since we officially moved in. It was filled with scrap wood, scrap metal, random other construction supplies, hand-me-down air conditioners, and a whole host of other debris I’ll never know about because I would just shut my eyes and ignore the disarray if I had to walk through there.
You might remember that the sunroom, even prior to its days as an enclosed landfill, is a bit of a hot mess. The roof has a leak, the faux stone vinyl flooring is held together by duct tape that is likely older than me, and the ill-fitting windows leave sizeable gaps open to spiders. Our plan is to fix up this room slowly but surely, and step one was to reclaim it as a livable space, rather than as a storage shed. So, Mr. S and I spent a long Sunday afternoon clearing out, sweeping, mopping, hosing down, and de-spidering the sun room, frequently grunting, “Homeownership sucks.” I wish I had a before picture to show you how heinous it was when we started because then this after photo would have so much more wow factor.
Overall, this first half of our summer has felt like a whirlwind – mostly due to my new role at work coupled with continuing adjustment to our new abode. Here’s hoping the rest of the summer is a lazier one because I am far too pale for mid-July.