Weeks 13 and 14 update: honey dos??

Monday, I left S’s house early so that I could be at work before everyone arrived as that’s when my productivity goes south as various team members drop by with either issues or just to chat. I anticipated the conversations would still be around be the organizational changes taking place and would be hard to concentrate on the tasks that needed to be completed. 

Sure enough, as I was finishing up my weekly status report, my cube became a buzz with conversations about the new boss, whom I’ve yet to meet, as well as other water fountain gossip, which seems to now occur at my desk instead of the actual water fountain. I guess that’s okay since I get to remain informed. 

Normally I could feel if the pulse or energy of the work place changes would negatively affect me. For this change, I’m not getting a bad feeling so I’m moving forward as I would typically do and just keep my head down and focus on what needs to be done. Truthfully, I don’t feel that my work would significantly change from what I’m doing now. So I’m not devoting too much energy to the changing of the guards.

Spring break…

S and her kids were on spring break on week 13 and were off skiing and snowboarding on the slopes for most of that week. I didn’t want to use up all my vacation so opted to stay at work. I’ll have to use vacation days later in the year. 

Part of the plan during her spring break were for S to pick up the flagstone she purchased off Craigslist. She needed my pickup truck so I left her my truck keys before I left for work on Monday knowing I probably wouldn’t be at my house when she came to collect it. I was glad I did that as Tuesday after work, the folks affected by the organization change went out to a happy hour in a nearby watering hole – any excuse to have drinks after work is a great excuse. 

During the happy hour, S called and seemed a bit miffed as I wasn’t at my house and wasn’t planning to leave the happy hour to meet her at my house when she picked up my truck. She goes out for happy hour with her teacher friends, I don’t see why she copped an attitude. “Whatever”, I thought to myself, “she’ll get over it.”

It took S two trips over the course of two days to get all the flagstone from the guys house in Eugene, OR to her house in McMinnville even after hiring five high school boys to help with the heavy lifting. They literally moved more than a ton of paving material. 

The rest of the week she spent playing with her kids and I focused on work. Come the weekend, the yard projects were on. 

Saturday (week 13)

One of the things S loves to do is attend open houses, not that she’s in the market to purchase one, but she just likes to go and see how the house were put together and showcased. 

One of the houses we saw a week prior that she loved, caused her thinking to switch to selling her home and downsizing to something smaller like what she had seen at the open house. 

On Saturday morning, my mind was on her backyard flagstone patio project and was calling various home improvement stores looking for a sod cutter to rent. I was excited I found one that I informed the sales rep that I would be leaving shortly (in a few minutes) to rent the machine. 

In my haste, I forgot the realtor from the open house were coming to S’s to discuss the timing of when to put her house on the market and things that S should and should not do to her house before it is put up for sale. She became clearly upset that I would be leaving her alone to talk with the realtor so as a good boyfriend would do, I called the rental store back to inform them that I wouldn’t be coming just yet and would be there a couple of hours later. 

S became upset again when she heard me call the rental shop and said she could manage the conversation with the realtor by herself. Now I’ve been around the block several times and knew from the tone in her voice that even though words came out of her mouth stating that she were fine talking to the realtor by herself, she really wanted me to stay. I’ll never understand why women can’t just say what they’re feeling instead of saying the opposite of what they really want. I stayed…

The conversation with the realtor took more than an hour, so consequently, I left to fetch the sod cutter later than I had anticipated, which was fine. It just meant that instead of having the backyard project well underway, we would just begin it today. 

About 90 minutes later, I returned with the sod cutter to find S not at home, which meant I would have to unload this 200+ pound machine from the bed of my pickup truck by myself, which wasn’t the first time I’ve had to do things myself that typically should be done with more help. I unloaded the machine with no injuries or damage to the machine and taught myself how to operate it via a quick tutorial on YouTube. Where would we be today without helpful sights like Google or YouTube to learn about stuff you have never done previously. Both are great resources for DIY projects. 

The sod cutting work were halfway completed by the time S had returned.  However since I hadn’t rolled up the old grass, S thought I had only started when she entered her backyard. Her disappointment turned into amazement as I began to reveal the already cut portion of her backyard and that all was needed were to roll up the sod and put it in the awaiting trailer her father left for us to use. 

S and her boys removed the previously cut sod and revealed the portion of her backyard where the flagstone pavers would eventually live (even after S moves from her current home). 

The plan continued to evolve since the removal of the old sod was taking less time than I had allocated. It now requires me to return the sod cutter on Saturday night in preparation of Sunday’s work load. 

Sunday (week 13)…

S and I awoke early and set out for the local equipment rental place which also provided the foundational material for laying out pavers for a patio. S rented a powered pounder and purchased a yard of quarter mitus which we would use as the foundation of the patio. Based on my calculations we needed a minimum of a couple of yards of the quarter mitus as the foundation layer but S was hell bent on just one yard as “she had carefully calculated her space”. I don’t think her calculations included the 1-2″ layer of the quarter mitus. We ended buying another yard and a half.

She made the same incorrect calculations on the sand and bought short again requiring her to return back to the rental place as I continued with the backyard chores. On the last trip to the rental place, she took the powered pounder and returned with another yard of sand. She left soon after the last load of sand was purchased to collect her daughter from her x husband’s house. I stayed behind and continued working on her flagstone patio. 

S returned about 3.5 hours later as she had to stop by my house to get my car as I would need it for my commute in the morning. I reached my goal of having all the flagstone for the patio laid before she returned. Her mother were impressed that I had accomplished as much as I had the last two days. S and her kids were equally impressed. I was done for the weekend. 

Week 14…

I’ll jump to the weekend as nothing worth mentioning happened at work this week. 

On Friday, I left for S’s house after attending the going away happy hour for one of our product owners, and getting my haircut. I reached her house around 9PM. S had planned for something in the morning, but I was able to escape that by informing her I had to work on my pet project. 

Saturday (week 14)…

I got up early and left around 9AM and let S know I would be back around 12 noon for our wine tasting and our early afternoon fun of driving around town before a night of fundraising for the local high school atheletic club. 

As planned, I was back at S’s house by noon and prepared for a customer appreciation at Dukes Family winery, which is a good winery that S belongs to and is only opened a few times of the year for their members to partake in a day of wine tasting and eating hors d’oeuvre being served by some caterer known by the winery. 

We sampled the wine, ate the appetizers and pizza, sat in the upper tasting room to find more elbow room, and drank more wine. Why is it that wineries have small, cramped tasting rooms? Other than the cramped lower tasting room, it’s a fine winery, but S thought they were snobby and thought she would drop her membership. I didn’t think they were snobby but then again, I don’t belong to many wineries so I wouldn’t know. I stopped my wine sampling after three tastings and switched to water as I was the designated driver. We left with her half case commitment and two additional wine purchases. 

Since I told S about my pet project, she’s been gung ho about helping me and to this end spent the remainder of the afternoon meandering around her small town. Now I’ll give a little hint in that my pet project has to do with real estate. I know her intentions were good but driving around town to look at properties were not my idea of helping me in my business. For one she’s very opinionated, and two, she has no clue in what I’m looking for or how to be efficient. Needless to say, she found the afternoon fun while I found it boring. However, I didn’t want to let in that this was not the way I conducted my business. 

A couple of hours later and driving to places that only had us look from the car or from the outside of a house, we were back at her house relaxing until the fundraising event. The best thing about the event was the crab dinner, which was $30 per person. There were also several silent auction items that none I won because they went over my max amount. Now I did purchase an equestrian wine tasting tour for S and me, which she was ecstatic about winning. It’s funny that she identified the items she wanted me to bid on but she didn’t bid on herself. Actually, she didn’t bid on any for herself. Hmmm…how did my money become hers. 

I would have bid on it anyway but just wondering how I entered that zone. I’ll have to analyze that more as the weeks progress. 

Sunday (week 14)…

I woke up early and laid in bed for a few minutes longer that I do during the week day just to soak in the stillness of the morning. Around an hour later, I had enough of the horizontal calm and got dressed to tackle the work I had ahead of me – solidifying the flagstone patio. I started on the patio and had completed four loads of sand by the time S awoke, made her coffee and stepped out onto her new patio. 

Instead of helping me today, she would be prom dress shopping for her daughter so on my own again on this “honey do” project. My goal was to be done with the final placement of the patio pavers by noon. I stopped at 1:30PM. Next weekend, I would tackle the pathway along the perimeter of her remaining yard. I’ll expect that I’ll be doing that labor myself as she’ll be shuttling kids to their various sporting activities. 

Personal thoughts…

All relationships evolve and traverse a course where the individuals committed in those always changing relationship take on their respective roles. Sometimes the roles organically come into being much like it seems that I’ve become “Mr. Moneybags” nowadays when it comes to S and my relationship, especially when it comes to our bigger ticket items. I’ve also evolved to be the Sunday dinner guy as the kids apparently prefer my cooking over their mother’s. I’m fine with the latter as that caters to my Filipino culture of ensuring the children and guests are well fed. 

The summer “pseudo” family vacation planning we now share but the payment of that vacation appears to be out of my pocketbook. I’m sure there will be a discussion coming in the next few months regarding how these plans are to be funded. 

Until my next posting, stay safe online as well as offline. 

#life #lifeasiknowit #lifeasithappens


#219 (out of storage unit)

It’s only a month later than I had originally planned but as of Sunday, I’m finally out of my storage unit. That’s a savings of a little more than $2800 a year. 

Unfortunately, since I’ve moved the items into my garage I have now have no room to actually park my car. So now my Beamer sits outside in the weather. I guess I’ve got a new incentive to get the suspended shelving up in my garage as the longer it doesn’t get completed, the longer my sports car sits in the Pacific Northwest winter weather. 

I’m also incentivized to sell off some things I no longer need like a bow flex, an antique iron bed, some tires, a portable air conditioner, and a pair of 10-speed bicycles just to name a few things. My son tells me to list them on Craigslist. But I’ve not done that before so hopefully it’ll work out that I sell all the unnecessary items. 

My goal is to have these no longer needed items gone by the end of the year. I wonder if that’s even possible.

Wish me luck!!

#singleasianmale #declutter #craigslist #sellit

#198 (not enough time)

All last week, I made myself leave work at a decent, normal time so that I could finish my home projects. I need to complete my garage storage project. Well that was the plan. But of course that didn’t happen. I left work late most every night and consequently did not work on my garage storage project. 

Two weeks prior, I completed the lagging in of the 2×4 boards that act as cleats from where the shelving units would be suspended. I still had three units to hang. 

Multiple projects syndrome 

As with my work life, my home life also consists of many project in varying stages. Other than the ongoing storage project, I also had a potluck luncheon on Friday. Wednesday and Thursday nights were used partly for preparing my contribution to the luncheon. I decided I would make the same item I made last year – my BBQ wings.  Those were simple to make and need to marinate for at least a day, then smoke them on the day of the luncheon. Easy peasy…

No time for my projects…

This past weekend, I spent it with S so did not work on my home projects. So maybe I’ll be able to complete or at least continue. 

On thing I promised myself is to not start on any other project until the garage storage is completed. 

#singleasianmale #diy #life #houseprojects #timemanagement #homeprojects

#194 (suspended storage shelving project continues)

Its been a few weeks since I started the suspended shelving garage storage project. I’ve been too busy at work during the week that I’ve been averaging 12 hours throughout the weekdays leaving little to no time in keeping my house let alone any additional work. As part of my OCD tendencies, things have to be put out of the way and not cluttered before I can work on other projects. 

OCD but multi tasker 

Although I must have all things in its place, I’m able to have multiple projects occurring in parallel as long as I can ensure all the clutter and mess caused by the multiple threaded projects is removed as a stopping point is reached. 

That’s why the suspended shelving project in my garage has spanned several weeks. As I approached the end of the allotted time, I have to bake in the clean up effort and time to put my tools back where they belong. I cannot leave them out. 

Cleansing and organizing…what a rush

This past Sunday, I devoted a very small part of my day to continuing the suspended storage shelving. It was Sunday so not much motivation to push hard. But I did complete the lagging in of one of the last 2×4 cleats where the suspended shelving would hang. Although I didn’t get much of the shelving project completed it’s still progress. As my high school football coach told me “you win by gaining every inch you reach.” So the adding of one of the final 2×4 cleat gets me closer to completing the garage storage project. 

Storage unit required for another month 

Lagging in the last 2×4 cleat, hanging the three remaining shelving units, and organizing the seasonal decorations into each suspended unit will wait until I can get to that step in the process. Next month I’ll have to retain the storage unit and dole out another $200. 

Poof into the air my money goes…

#singleasianmale #menslife #storageunit #homeprojects #clutterfree #alittleocd

#192 (that’s gotta go!)

The month of my one year anniversary of being in my new home is here. I gave myself until the end of the month to be completely out of my storage unit. 

Of course, nothing bad would actually happen if I didn’t. It’s just a $200 a month I would be saving instead of giving it to a storage company. So I guess the incentive is $2400 a year back in my retirement / investment account. 

Should I bring everything home?

No! That would be crazy of me. But my mental clock is ticking and running out days to unload the items still in storage. Or that’s my initial thought. On the other hand, I guess I could. I have no one to tell me, “No you cannot bring that into my home!”  


So part of the goal is to also sell off things that I really don’t need or want anymore. Take for example my bow flex. I’ve probably used that machine a few weeks in the five years I’ve had it. Worse thing is I’ve moved it twice already. It’s traveled with me to a townhouse after my house that I owned with me ex was sold. Then it traveled from my townhouse to my current house I’m buying and sits upstairs collecting dust. I was crazy to have my movers move it upstairs and reassemble the damn thing. It’s got to go!

I also have two 10-speed bicycles. One is a schwinn and the other is a huffy, which I bought in a garage sale thinking I would fix up. Yeah right! Then I go and buy me a road bicycle a few months ago because I wanted more than ten speeds. Both my old bicycles got to go!!

I just lost my garage…

I’ll have to bring them home and temporarily store things in my garage and living space as I SELL them off on Craigslist. Oh crap! I’m a closet hoarder!!!!

#singleasianmale #menslife #storageunit #homeprojects

#185 (football and DIY)

The kids were back home and S and I were in bed by 1AM. She set her alarm for 6:30am to be ready for her girlfriend trip the next morning. My plans were to go back to my house and work on my own house projects. The one I need to finish is the overhead garage storage that is suspended from the ceiling. 

I debated on staying at S’s house as there were a house full of kids. I guess her kids were okay and accustomed to having their mother do things with her adult friends and leaving them to fend for themselves. They are teenagers so I guess that’s okay. I mean when I was a teenager I remember not wanting to do things with my parents.  

I debated on staying to be the adult in the house, but I’m not sure I’m mentally there yet. If I had stayed, I would have made the kids breakfast before I took off for my house. 

But I didn’t and left the same time as S did, which as about 7:30am. I was back home around 9am after stopping off to get breakfast and collecting my mail from my PO box. 

I decided to watch the Pittsburgh Steelers game on TV. I typically don’t watch them as when I do they lose. My superstition is to not watch them but only to check out the score every now and then. However since I was wearing Pittsburgh Steelers black and gold, I ignored my rule and watched them. Luckily they didn’t lose. 

Prior to turning on the ballgame, I negotiated with myself that I would work on my suspended storage shelving after the game. Staying true to my promise I resumed my garage storage project and nearly completed lagging in the support beams that are to hold the suspended shelving. 

I called it quits by 7:30pm. I’ll need a few hours more to complete the installation…

#singleasianmale #menslife #dating #relationship #housework #diy #homeimprovement #pittsburghsteelers #americanfootball

#183 (project list)

There’s a difference in the way S identifies and prioritizes her house projects than I would. For me, what I see daily needs to be cleaned and functional before other areas of my house takes priority. As an example, my bedroom and master suite needs to be tidy and clutter free. This is the same for my kitchen, my living / dining rooms, and my bathrooms. It must be my mom’s upbringing that instilled this behavior. 

For S, her priorities were not her main living areas. Her first priority was her garage. It’s no shock her kitchen, her bathrooms, her living and dining rooms were always cluttered. Her master bedroom is huge but you can’t tell as she has piles of clothes (not sure if they are clean or dirty), piles of shoes, and other piles of things she hasn’t touched since I was there last. I’m tempted to clean up her room, but I’m sure she’ll freak out as she’ll not know where things are…not that she knows where things are now. 

For this past Saturday, one of her projects were to have shelving up above her overflow fridge in her garage. Now last week we removed the overhead cabinets. She also planned to finish painting her upstairs office, and to weed her front flower bed, and somehow get time to see the new Magnificent 7 movie. 

I woke up early Saturday and got myself ready as S slept in. After she got raady, we ate breakfast out, and then ventured to the local home improvement store and bought the shelving. We had a hearty breakfast and we both felt sleepy after breakfast while we were shopping for her garage shelving project. I worked through the lethargic feeling and found my second wind. Apparently, S couldn’t recover and decided to nap when we got back to her house. 

I started on the shelving and realized we didn’t buy the braces to hold up the shelving. So back to the home improvement store I go alone. She apparently woke and discovered I wasn’t there as the text I received while at the store read: “where are you?”  

I texted her that I had to get the braces we didn’t buy in our previous trip to the home improvement store. She actually called and informed she was going to drop some items off at Goodwill and asked if I wanted to go. I told her, “you can go as I want to get the shelving project completed.” 

I already knew the list of projects for today would not get completed as she was doing things not on the list. “Oh well,” I thought, “it’s not my house , but I’m determined to get my list of things done.”

The other things on my list was to hang her stained glass window, which was an item from three or four weeks prior when her sister was visiting, and winter proofing the irrigation system. 

When I got back to her house, her car was in the drive, but I didn’t go looking for her. I continued and completed the shelving project. I was done about an hour later, which was around 1:30PM. 

Next on my list was hanging her stained glass window. I previously bought open hooks that screwed into the top window frame. It only took 5 minutes, if that, to complete that task. S was on the phone talking to somebody. Didn’t bother me any but another confirmation that her list would not get completed. My project #2 was done. On to my third project for the day. 

This past summer, I created a temporary irrigation system to water her raised vegetable garden as well as her front flower beds. The temporary irrigation system had battery powered valves that controlled when and how long water was to flow. It worked well and kept the two zones watered during the warm summer months. Here in the Pacific Northwest, we don’t need year round irrigation system as the wet season starts late September and ends in June the following year. Thus a temporary irrigation system does the job nicely. 

I disconnected the brains of the watering system and removed the batteries from the water pumps. Project #3 done. It was now a few minutes after 2PM.

I reminded S it was 2pm and it was time to get ready for the movie. She disappeared upstairs to shower and change into non weekend work clothes. 

As for S’s projects, the upstairs painting wasn’t started, but she did begin the preparation of her deck for winter. Basically she removed the cushions from her patio furniture and stacked them. She didn’t cover them which means they would require cleaning in the spring as I’m sure the green moss will grow on them during the wet months ahead. I thought to myself, “Oh well, that’s another project in the spring!”

S was showered and dressed by 2:30. But she then started cooking for dinner as she was thinking that she needed to cook something for her kids. I thought to myself, “What?!”

Well of course we were late to the movie…

#singleasianmale #menslife #dating #relationship #houseprojects #timemanagement

#177 (hunting for wood: part 2)

The tree trunk I just bought was just the tip of this man’s incredible inventory. Jackie spotted a couple of boards that grabbed her attention and started her negotiations. It was great seeing someone like me working to get a good deal. Actually it’s not hard work as this guy’s prices were incredibly low that I would feel guilty trying to get even a lower price. In fact this is the first time that I’m not haggling. 

Jackie doesn’t move as fast on the deal as I do and we continued to dig deeper into his inventory and walked through a gated fence to his backyard, which were also sectioned into different areas depending on the wood. He had great material for shelving. 

My mind wasn’t seeing what I needed in other areas in my house but instead focused on a block or a beam for my dining room chandelier. He had something close but not one that I had to have. 

As Jackie and I maneuvered back to the front of his house, I saw the birds eye alder again but from a different angle. It was magnificent specimen of an awesome tree. I’ve not seen a birds eye alder before today as I’m from the South and accustomed to seeing bunches of quarter sawn oak, pine, and mahogany. An occasional walnut or poplar might be spotted and in rare and lucky instances, a furniture piece made of birds eye maple might be seen, but never a birds eye alder. 

As I was pointing and grabbing for the birds eye alder, I asked, “how much for this piece?” He thought for a second and responded, “$10.00.”  I stuck my hand out to shake on the deal as my jaw dropped open. “I’ll take it!” I said. 

I could believe it, I just bought a plank of birds eye alder measuring approximately 5′ tall and about 24″ wide for $10.00. My total came to $110.00. 

Soon after Jackie secured her two pieces and we paid the man, we loaded up and headed back to our area of the state, which was about an hour away. Jackie and I were both stoked with our finds. We vowed we would return in a couple of weeks after he replenished his inventory…

#singleasianmale #menslife #liveedgewood #chandelier #diy #birdseye #alder

#176 (hunting for wood: part 1)

Jackie and I have several things in common and you would think we had grown up together the way we are when we’re together at work or outside of work. 

Now Jackie, like me, enjoys working on projects that requires the use of power tools and other hand held craft wielding devices. One of our first ventures were taking a welding class together. We both loved it and both of us are itching to get our hands on a good used line fed welder. 

Our adventure last Thursday was finding a supplier or just a reasonably priced seller of live edge wood. For those that do not know what is live edge wood, this is milled wood that still has its bark or it has the outermost layer of the tree just under the bark. I have several lighting ideas for my house and I think I want to incorporate in my design a wooden object with a live edge. 

We left work and headed to the address of where this man is selling his live edge wood. I was expecting a farm like setting with a barn. Quite the contrary. We ended up in a subdivision and he was selling this wood from his house. He actually sells his wood across the nation. I think he said he had shipped outside the country even. I was amazed at both his story and his inventory of live edge wood planks. 

I literally could have spent hours combing through the many boards he had. Each board were unique in that the patterns were one of a kind and would completely differ from another piece cut from the same tree. 

After about five minutes after our initial introductions, I spotted a piece of wood that had a very unique pattern. It was a section of a trunk from a spalted maple. It was incredible and measured roughly 3.5 feet in diameter and about 8″ thick. So it was a sizable item. We talked about the piece and I learned the intricate designs found in the spalted maple are caused by various and different fungi growing in the tree. 

After he shared his knowledge of how the spalted maple got its unique patterns, I asked, “how much for the trunk?” 

He quickly told his price, “I’ll need to sell that for $100.” 

I’m not sure if I reacted too fast but I stuck out my hand for him to shake on the deal as he said the last syllable of his reply. He also reciprocated and stuck out his hand and we closed the deal on that piece. I was stoked!

Having realized that Jackie may have wanted that piece, I turned to her and apologized, “I’m sorry. I get in the moment and make a deal when I see something I like.” 

Jackie replied, “no worries.” But I read in her facial expressions that she was interested in that piece. Or at least that’s what I saw.

We continued to browse…

#singleasianmale #menslife #liveedgewood #coffeetable #diy #spaltedmaple

#175 (the storage project – part 2)

Well now that I realized the rafters ran parallel to the wall, I had to install the cross beams on same wall where of the garage door opens and closes. Not a problem. Yeah right!

As most houses, there are some things that make you scratch your head and rhetorically ask yourself, “why would they build it like that?” You see I would imagine that there would be a rafter where the walls and the ceiling meets. But no! That’s too logical. 

My original design called for three lag screws for each of the four foot cross planks. Maybe it’s overkill, but I really don’t want the shelving to fall. Well it turns out, I could not attach the the third lag screw as there was nothing to secure it to where the walls and ceiling meet. 

After tightly securing the other two lags through the cross beam plank, the 3/4″ dry wall, and into the rafter, I did a pull test. Although there were only two lag screws, the plank did not budge. Each hanging shelving unit requires two planks. I measure out 45″ from the center of the newly installed plank. That would be the center of the second plank. 

The installation of the second plank went much smoother and quicker than the first plank. Four hours into the project, I had two planks installed. Whoop whoop! I’m only two hours behind my original estimate. 

Looking at the pictures, I installed the first post into the plank, then the second went, the the stabilizing bar that attaches to the two posts. Yeah! One side hung. Another 30 minutes, I had the two remaining posts hung and the stabilizing bar attached. 

Another 30 minutes, I had the 3-piece base attached between the two stabilizing bars. The final screws were tightened and the storage shelving was ready for the items that would lead be there. The lucky items are my crab pots and the associated rigging. 

One ‘ready to hang’ unit up…6 more to go…

This one unit took nearly six hours from design to actually storing my crabbing equipment. So the other 6 will get installed piecemeal as I find the time…but hopefully before my one year anniversary of owning my home. 

#singleasianmale #menslife #garageshelving #homestorage #diy