He Knows How to Polish His Wood

J.’s been wanting to polish his wood for a loooong time. It was all he could talk about for months. Then one day several brown boxes were delivered by UPS. And he actually started — and FINISHED. In 3 days.

BEFORE:

Scratched Wood Floors

STEP ONE: Move all furniture (a real challenge when you live in Manhattan), cover everything else with plastic tarps.

STEP TWO: Begin Sanding (great upper body workout!). The machines were no joke.

Sanding Wood Floors

STEP THREE: Apply Wood Filler to cracks in floor, then SAND again.

WOOD FILLER

STEP FOUR: FREAK OUT because there’s 3 inches of dust coating everything (and his family is arriving in 24 hours)!!

womanscreaming

STEP FIVE: Apply First Coat and do not step in it, on it, near it — for a few hours.

STEP SIX: Apply Second Coat. Let it dry. Afterwards, socks for everyone — especially the dog who slides across the floor like Tom Cruise in Risky Business.

Apply PolishPut socks on the dog

AFTER: Wha-laaah! Brand new floors!

AFterWood

Despite being forewarned by others (“What are you freakin’ crazy? Hire someone!”), J. managed to save thousands and do an incredibly professional job. Here’s what we learned:

DON’T

  • Start this project a few days before you have family from out of town visiting (although it may provide extra motivation to finish!)
  • Do this in the summer when the average temperature is 90 degrees and the humidity is so thick Manhattan feels like the Amazon Rainforest

DO

  • Enforce “no shoes” rule
  • Cover everything with plastic tarps and tape them down (or they’re useless)
  • Offer nonstop encouragement and praise (“Honey, you’re a master!”, “You’re so close!”)
  • Give kudos to the handyman boyfriend who just saved thousands of dollars by insisting on doing it himself!

EXTRA BONUS: I’m totally cool with the five-second rule now. My man knows how to polish his wood.

Rainbow

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The STUFF He Buys…

They say you never really know someone until you live with them. I say you never really know someone until you see what they spend their money on. Being observant, it’s never more than a few hours before I notice the new additions a la Amazon.

Ah, some naked chicks painted in gold holding a globe that spells, THE WORLD IS YOURS. Why does this look familiar??

TheWorldIsYours

I’ve seen it somewhere…Oh, yeah — Scarface. “Say hello to my little friend!”

Dirty-CleanMagnet

This magnet has actually helped prevent multiple, “It’s not cleeeeannn!”, “YES IT IS!!” arguments. I recommend this for all newly cohabitating couples with a dishwasher.

ManGrill

The Ultimate Man Grill. Its sheer size intimidates me, besides it has a gas tank and I’m afraid I’ll blow the whole townhouse up. It’s all his.

LED remotesLEDLights

No, he does not own six cars. These remotes control all the indoor LED lighting he installed. I have no idea which is for which. Or what our neighbors must think when they see the lights go from yellow to green to red to blue.

And his best investment yet — the loyal love machine, Cosimo, our Cane Corso:

CaneCorso_goodpurchase

What crazy stuff does your man buy?

My Mom and BF Text…ALOT

I’m not a PHONE PERSON. Not anymore. When I was 16, I could be found with a cordless smooshed into my cheek, talking to a boy or two on the phone for hours on end about absolutely nothing. Now, I communicate in person with raised eyebrows, shrugged shoulders and a wicked laugh. Or long distance via text, emoticons, Facebook, Twitter and my staple, email. Even professionally, I prefer email. I’m shocked when someone leaves a voicemail.

Picking up on this, my mother began texting about two years ago, happy to receive a response from me in less than 10 seconds, albeit sometimes short and sometimes snotty. Around the same time things became more serious with J. She was relieved that she no longer had to worry about me coming home late at night to an empty apartment in the East Village or being kidnapped on the subway. J. was either with me or waiting up for me. So began her nightly texting shoutouts to him, “Where is she??? Is she home yet?” when I was out of touch for more than 30 minutes after 8pm. They evolved into much, much more.

Mom Texting

When J.’s phone vibrates it’s either a TeamStream sports update OR my mother. They organize brunches, discuss borrowing the car, arrange dog-sitting Cosimo, even plan the Mother’s Day restaurant — WITHOUT ME.

Some boyfriends hate when the mother sticks her nose in. But Dee Dee is often invited to offer her opinion…unless it’s not the same as his. I can only tell you how annoying it is to hear, “But your mother said…” in the midst of an argument. I wish I could get even, but J’s parents DO NOT TEXT. I’m only copied on cute animal emails from his mom. I must, I must — teach her to text next time I’m in North Carolina!

Though I have to give my mom kudos, she’s a super-texter. There are nights when J. and I will simultaneously receive multiple paragraph-long texts from her with different messages at the exact same time! Most include an emoticon and some reference to scripture or telling me/him what to do (even though we didn’t ask).

Here’s a typical paragraph-long text:

momtexting

So my friends, do your boyfriend and mom text??

Rainbow

We’re the Living Stat: Cohabitation Rises to 48%

In New York City, living together seems to be the natural progression of a relationship. Why pay double the monstrous rent when you’re sleeping over every night anyway?

Screen Shot 2013-04-07 at 3.35.46 PM

If my grandmother were alive today, she would be cluck-clucking her tongue, frowning and whispering in J.’s ear to “buy the cow.” But it’s not the 1950s, and in my own family there have been 12 marriages (and multiple divorces) among only a few women. I am not one of them.

By age 29, more than a dozen of my friends had both walked the aisle and filed for divorce. Losing homes, losing heart and losing hope wasn’t a path I wanted to follow. A divorced friend shared, “It’s better to say you’ve at least been married once.” I don’t agree. Maybe I’ve been more cautious, but I knew the signs of when to run…

“If you want the ring, don’t move in.” That old-fashioned sentiment has certainly worked for some, but it’s just that — old-fashioned. The truth is you really don’t know someone until you live with them. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, cohabitation is on the rise, rise, rise. Many of these cohabitating couples go on to marry within three years. Speaking on behalf of my fellow cohabitators, I already feel like I’m married.

You have to do what works best for you. There is no formula for the perfect relationship. Some see marriage as the finish line. WE all crave love and companionship, and whether it’s  cohabitation or a church wedding, it’s love. That will always be the key ingredient.

To my 13-year-old nieces, I only advise you to follow your heart, not to be pressured by your peers, your mom or any man. Never lose yourself in the process. And if you do decide on the big-church wedding, I will be there donned in pink taffeta ready to throw some glitter your way!

Love,

Rainbow

Puppy Boo Boo

I’m the type of girl that is likely to faint from the sight of blood. My knees buckle, my palms get sweaty and I start looking for a spot to “land”.  Especially when it’s fresh blood, bright red,  dripping from someone I love. Someone like my puppy.

Last night upon spotting a red trail of paw prints on the hardwood floors of our apartment, I panicked. Upon further inspection, I saw a piece of Cosimo’s paw pad hanging. Instant nausea.

“J.!!!!!!!!!!!!! Come quick!! And bring a bandage!” I screamed down the stairs. You never realize how much you love someone until you see them in pain. Bandaging a 130 lb. Mastiff is a skill in itself. But he was a good sport. Meaning J. He didn’t buckle, he stayed calm, he washed, disinfected and acted as a one-man mastiff triage center.

hurtpawcosihurt

Seems Cosi went a little wild in the park last night and took off into the woods, as children will do. Being the concerned parents, we scrambled to find the first aid kit and make sure he didn’t need to be rushed to the Vet. As someone who doesn’t have kids yet, I instantly sympathized with all my friends who do have mini-mes running around.  They have dealt with cuts, scrapes, stitches, broken limbs and far worse.

What materialized after the initial panic was immense, unconditional love. Love for my pup and love for my boyfriend who was the savior and who made everything OK. On this Valentine’s Day, I’m thankful that both my loves are healing and that they are in my life to heal me from my daily hurts, too.

myloves

Happy V Day to my man and my puppy boo boo.

With love,

Rainbow

Immobilized By Mobile

My Phone I look at the screen of my iPhone approx once every 10 minutes…more if I’m waiting for a response or if I’m lost on the Lower East Side, a regular occurrence even though I’ve lived in NYC my whole life.  And don’t ask Siri for directions, that bitch doesn’t know where she is either. When she responds, she’s usually in another state…like Indiana. Two words, one App: Google Maps.

So my digital professor asked us to track our mobile selves for three days — I chose the weekend, as the beginning of this week has been one I’d like to bury in a six foot ditch. Here goes:

SNOWY FRIDAY

Blogged about Tonik, the Human-faced dog to test WordPress SEO and see if I could glean on to some of his page views. He is adorable and it worked. Some silly souls who searched for “human face dog”, were driven to my blog post.

Facebook Posting: Contributed to the viral “Your year is” post, where a friend randomly picks an age, and asks what you were doing at that life phase. The age I was given was 22. I drove a Honda Accord, worked for the New York Jets and wanted to be financially independent. Life was good, oh, wait, I dated Aaron M….yeah, it wasn’t that good. I continued to spread it to another 1o friends.

Updated Business Facebook page: For 121 Fulton, the bar & restaurant I invested in. I hated the “empty bar” cover photo they had and replaced it with one from our One Year Anniversary Party and linked to an article on the men that run the Paige Group, our managing partners.

Facebook Mobile Chatted: Didn’t know I had this feature but heard my mobile “dinging”, and then saw a slew of messages from Felipe, an old Brasilian (I will spell it his way) friend who I once dated…unsuccessfully. And after writing a scathing essay, “Blame It On Felipe,” and a few years of telling him to “f*ck off”, we’re friends again and sharing work experiences. Appropriate since we first met at NYU when we were classmates in a sports certification program.

iPhone Nemo Shots: Like every other Northeasterner I took a sh*tload of pictures of the blizzard and um, everyone’s pics look kind of the same — white and blurry.

Ordered Flight from DirecTV. Not what I expected, but let’s just say if you go to AA meetings, you will relate to this movie.

Here’s a quick pictoral summary of FRiDaY:

TonikFacebook Viral Post121 Fulton Snow Night IMG_2900Flight

SUNNY SATURDAY:

Woke up to the smell of pancakes, but stayed in bed scrolling through Facebook, seeing pics of everyone who has kids — with their kids in the snow. Prayed that no one would have a heart attack while shoveling.

Watched DVR’d episode of Shark Tank. Only memorable product pitch were the hoodie pillows by the same chick who had pitched Citti Kitty — toilet-training for your cat. Do they have that for dogs? I would love if Cosimo could just use our toilet like a urinal.

Pinterest Notification #68:  That someone “repinned” my HBO Girls pin, “Almost getting it…kind of together.” It’s not even my original pin, but I pinned it a few weeks back and now I get five notifications a day that someone else pinned it, too. Got it– none of us have it together.

Used Hopstop App: To find fastest (and warmest) route to Jamie’s Surprise Party downtown at Puck Fair.

Angry Birds Star Wars: So intriguing that J. played it the whole way down (from Upper West to Soho). I’m so not intrigued. Big deal — now the ANGRY birds shoot laser beams from their chests.

Pictures (non-snow): Handed J. my phone. Apparently he had one too many margaritas …

Angry Birds StarWarsSurprise Party @ Puck FairTequilaBaked by MelissaWag.comGirls Pin

MOVE SLOW AS SH*T SUNDAY:

Overslept, but still made it to church downtown at the River. J. who introduced me to the nondenominational church almost three years ago when we began dating, refused to come. So I put on my big-girl pants and went by myself. I like being surrounded by people with good energy and it’s rare to find a place with so many under the same roof.

Afterwards, I made an indulgent visit to Chipotle, my guilty pleasure. While I sat there scooping up my chicken burrito bowl, I scrolled a Facebook post that said something about being a better person by not indulging in comfort food. F*ck! Ah, whatever. Back to the photos of friends’ kids sledding down the hill. All the photos looked vaguely the same. Some parents admitted posting the “obligatory kid playing in snow photo” to keep up with the Joneses.

Google, Google, Google. Did a few hours of research for a startup company in its infancy stage. What did people do before Google — go to the library? Finished 10 page research document and forwarded it to the starter-upper leader. I signed an NDA, so my lips are sealed.

Asked J. if he noticed the incessant burping/belching/yawning of our male housemates. His response: “You wanted to live with all guys.”  Turned up Pandora on my phone. Bruno Mars tunes out burps. What are these guys eating?!

SO MUCH ON TV ON SUNDAYS —  Shameless (counted 10 sex scenes), Girls, Enlightened, The Walking Dead and the Grammys. THANK GOD FOR DVR!!

While I was watching Girls, I glanced at my mobile’s Facebook feed, and saw that I had missed Bruno Mars performing with — STING! Uuggggggh. Was so pissed. I Googled it, and found the clip already posted on Just Jared. Click on pic below to watch — absolutely amazing. Chills.

Sting and Bruno Mars

The only thing I found distracting — the markings under Rihanna’s boobs. Yes, she also came on-stage, but was completely lacking in energy. So WTF were those markings? New gifts from Chris Brown? Only one way to find out:

Rihanna Boob Marking Google Search

Ok, Chris Brown didn’t scar her, those were self-inflicted tattoos. FUGLY!

So what have I discovered this weekend? That I’m spoiled by Google, and that I keep track of what’s going on in the world via the Facebook newsfeed. Oh, and I’d love to have an App where I take a picture of my outfit, and Stacy London’s voice belts out, “Oh no you don’t, you wore that to the last birthday party you went to!” That would be so helpful. A Virtual Closet Inventory Keeper. That’s my App!

What’s your mobile world doing?

F*ck the Winter Blahs!

Happy light, vaseline, tissues, wine, blankets and lots of friends. These are the key ingredients for? NO, not that, you dirty little f*cker! This is what helps crush the winter blahs! Every January, I gleefully ‘X’ the days off the calendar, fantasizing about the arrival of spring. I also daydream about having that second home on the coast of La Jolla and private jet flown by Channing Tatum to whisk me off for the first quarter of the year…but I’m not quite there yet. So this year, I hosted my first annual “F*ck the January Blahs Party” and found many of my amigos were suffering from the same ailments (not all, some have wisely relocated to Miami, San Diego and Maui).

Last weekend, over 70 people made their way to our place on the upper, upper west side, armed with bottles of booze and obvious relief that there was something to do on a Friday night. I rolled out my childhood faves — Hungry, Hungry Hippos and Operation. And as I predicted, the more my guests imbibed, the more they wanted to play. Early in the evening, it began to snow lightly, and I worried I would be stood up, but no one bailed, and the place was pumping.

F*ck the Winter Blahs!IMG_2765IMG_2753Party People

J. got to show off all his custom painting and even Cozi was a party dog, setting his sights on our friend Michael and showing his affection by humping his leg. He never does that! The festivities began at 8pm and we kicked our last guest out the door at 5am — we still know how to throw a party!

Hungry, Hungry HipposThe Fulton GirlsKidnapping my Dog!

The next morning J. and I huddled under the covers with egg sandwiches, a bottle of Aleve and a bottle of water, looking at the pictures (the best part)…already trying to plan our next shindig. We’re all in this together (meaning, this sh*tty weather). So when possible, fight the urge to sleep in and watch the last season of Homeland. Be social.  Isolation will lead to nothing more than bags of empty Cheetos and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup wrappers scattered on your floor and another 10 lbs. on your ass!

Tomorrow is Groundhog Day, pray that little furry dude does not see his shadow!

Chubby Groundhog

I’ve Become the Third Wheel

Mastiff takes over

If I get up to pee in the middle of the night, I usually come back to find an imposter’s massive head smooshed into my foam pillow. His snores sound like that of a 90-year-old man as he stretches his legs and gives me a sharp kick, not letting me back in. “Doggy bed, now!” I direct as he whimpers.  J. doesn’t even notice there’s been a change of guard and thinks it’s me spooning him, when it’s really Cosimo, our 130 lb. pup.

I can’t help feeling that I’ve become the third wheel. Cosi is real competition. He licks J’s elbows in the morning (not my thing), waits outside the door while he’s in the shower (I got things to do),  looks at him with big eyes like everything he says is fascinating (I’ve already heard that story a 100x), doesn’t fight with him over the remote (I hate Tosh. O!) and wags his tail like no other (I try shaking my bootie in response).

Cosimo is obsessed with my boyfriend. He paces when J’s not home, then practically knocks him down the stairs when he walks in. He reminds me of that matted stuffed animal that followed Mark Wahlberg around in TED. They sit on the couch together, watch the Simpsons, share chicken fingers, drink beers, dogcall at other hounds out the window. The testosterone is over-flowing in this apartment…and the bros are both constantly thumping their chests and smacking paws.

J. recently sent his whole family an email titled, “Me and My Best Friend”. Opening it, I expected to see some photos of us from Hawaii, the Catskills, but no,  it was J. and Cosi swimming in the pool, J. and Cosi rolling around in the grass…J. and Cosi both yawning. Waaat?? The beast has bested me.

I don’t get it. I don’t need to be taken out for walks. I don’t piss a gallon and then step in it, making doggie pee-pee prints for half a block. I don’t drool while J’s eating and then wipe my mouth on his pants. I don’t lick my balls.  I don’t shed making his black peacoat resemble a fur jacket and most importantly — I don’t clear out the room with my doggie bombs.

So Cosi, my Cane Corso rival, watch your furry butt, it’s on! I know your tricks and I have some of my own…

Hibernation May Lead to Temporary Insanity

When There's Nothing Else to Do -- Cuddle!

When There’s Nothing Else to Do — Cuddle!

I know I’m going to regret these words, but here goes. I am BORED out of my freakin’ mind! From having barely two hours of down time a week to now having lost track of what day of the week it is — because there are just TOO MANY days in the week. WTF is wrong with me?! It’s Winter Break, never one of my favorites even when I was an undergrad, because it takes Girl-with-the-Dragon-Tattoo-digging-herself-out-of-a-shallow-grave-type will power to get out of bed in the morning. And by the time I get going, it’s dark an hour later.

January sucks. And right now I’m in limbo. Grad school doesn’t start up again until the end of the month and I’m interviewing for a full-time position, which even though I’m in a relationship, reminds me of online dating.  I.e., Have an encouraging profile (LinkedIn), Wink (send your resume), Stalk (keep following up for that interview), First Date (the anticipation — oh will they like me?), and Second Date (ok, they kinda liked me), to the Offer (Will you stop texting that other dude and move in with me?). I know, I know. Patience. But it will always be a virtue I just don’t get.

To J.’s delight, our apartment has never been cleaner. I do the laundry EVERY DAY, I’ve been sorting the whites from the darks, scrubbing those tiny, hard-to-get surfaces in the tub with a toothbrush, going on long dog walks with Cosi and analyzing his doggie doo (too many eggs!). I have organized the contents of my drawers by color, shape and size. I’ve cooked two nights in a row. And I NEVER cook. I’m reading the mind-numbing Where We Belong by Emily Giffen, because I’ll feel guilty if I don’t finish it. I’ve become addicted to International House Hunters on HGTV and see flashes of exotic beaches, lanais, and thatch roofs appearing in my dreams at night. I wake up not to an alarm clock — but to a 130 lb. Mastiff enthusiastically licking my armpits, which should make any girl feel really good about herself.

J. is more stressed as he transacts and interacts with his real estate clients, and I add to it by annoying him constantly, let’s do something! And today, sensing I may pull a Shining moment — “Heeeere’s Raaaaainbooooow!” with my hair sticking up and a kitchen knife in hand, he rolled out my old red Trek covered in two inches of dust. Once he carried it down two flights of stairs and filled the flat tires, there was no backing out. I felt my thighs painfully contract as they struggled to make the wheels turn in the city streets. My inner eight-year-old woke up and yelled, “Hey lady, are you kidding me! Did you forget how to ride a bike?!” Slowly it came back, even though I tripped over a curb in Central Park while trying to change gears and almost fell into a grassy knoll. Way to make an impression as you enter the bike path.

J. and Cosi ran next to me and then, past me, even though I was the one on the bike. The cyclist pros of the park also sped by with their two thousand-dollar gliding machines and padded butt pants, gel packs and shiny helmets gleaming in the winter sun. I was donning a ski hat and black sunglasses, sans fanny pack and water bottle. The runners panted by, little dogs squeaked by, and even a wheelchair or two outdid me. But it’s cool, I can handle it, I was just happy to be riding something other than the subway.

Riding in Central Park North

Riding in Central Park North

I feel better now, even though I’m walking kind of funny. I just wish that global warming would subside a bit, so we could get some snowflakes and I would feel less guilty about my winter agoraphobia. But hey I just found my “Happy Light”, so that should crank the energy up a bit.  Thanks mom, for the gift and inference that I was suffering from SAD so many years ago. Ok, back to annoying the crap out of J., hopefully he has unearthed a board game or deck of cards or something…

P.S. When I’m insanely busy and blotchy with stress in a few weeks, please remind me of my winter doldrums…and how lucky I was to be able to sleep in!

How To Brainwash Your Man

Program your plasma to HGTV and lose the remote. From House Hunters to Cousins on Call to Love It or List It, your couch potato (your man) will be inspired and itching to show you how handsome his version of the handyman can be. It’s like the movie Inception — but with decorating.

J. has always been the fixer-upper-starter-not finisher type. There were at least five half painted walls/projects abandoned with their frog tape wilting and flapping with neglect. But during the holiday break, the channel surfer landed on HGTV one night and never left. And then it happened. He began to actually finish what he started!

Tonight, it’s past 10pm and he just asked me to make him a pot of coffee. “Waat? Cawfee…now?” But when I saw him pry open a paint can instead of a beer bottle, and grab the brushes and rags from the utility closet, I knew it was go time. I quickly rushed to grind the coffee beans.

Ladies, just ease into it…slowly. Start with an episode of House Hunters which is always interesting because you get to play a sort of “Choose Your Own House” game. Last night, there was a couple that was in the market for an island. Then try those cute Property Brothers twins — one finds the house, the other remodels it. Every girl’s fantasy. And don’t turn the TV off, ever. Even when he starts snoring. By morning, you will have your own Bob Ross in the bedroom, albeit much younger, and hopefully a hell of a lot better looking.

Happy Home Improvement!

HGTV Inspiration