Finding My Me Time


Finding my me time and kicking back to relax in this strange house feels weird.

I know the house will feel like home one of these days, but that day isn’t today. Tomorrow isn’t looking good either.

We’re making progress. I’m stuck here, because I want to say the progress is slow, but it really isn’t. We’ve come pretty far in just over two weeks. The house barely smells. The new light fixtures are amazing. The painting is started.

The ugly counters are still a thing, but we’ll get there.

One thing that I’ve been enjoying is taking baths.

I fantasized about a sloping claw foot tub, or maybe a garden tub with jets. I did not get either of those things.

I got this behemoth of a tub. This tub is deep and long and has those handles that look like daisies. Well, daisies drawn by a small child.  The side of the tub has three ridges with a sort of art deco feel. The rubber stopper isn’t on a chain or anything. I don’t know how or when, but one day that stopper is going to go missing. I know us.

Also, I’d like to report, as of yet, we haven’t found any huge issues with the house.

There are issues. Not free-to-fix issues, but not too horrible.

And there are some annoying issues. Like the poison ivyzilla plant in our backyard. Most of the doors have issues. Maybe 2 or 3 doors open and close easily. The rest stick. Or won’t close.

We also have ants.

These aren’t those little ants we got every spring at the other house. These are those big, fat black sumo looking antsant as long as weasels.

The point of entry for these ants appears to be the bathroom window.

I had to murder three ants before I could take a bath tonight.

The first one was so big that I felt it squish inside the wad of toilet paper. I felt like a monster. Killing the other two ants wasn’t as bad because I couldn’t feel them squish. Also, I think it gets easier after the first time.

My estimate is that this this tub has been cleaned at least 100 times since it’s been in this house. Since 1962. Maybe 150 times. I am assuming this is the original tub. It looks very much like a tub would look if it were 66 years old and only cleaned 100 times.

You can scrub this tub all you want, it’s still going to be stained and discolored. That is getting fixed as well. Unfortunately, it’s going to be a while. My thinking was, I’d call and get an estimate to get the tub re-glazed and then they’d be back in a week to get the job done.

It turns out that was an unrealistic time frame. The earliest opening they have is in September. Toward the end.

But that’s okay.

Just because the tub doesn’t look clean, doesn’t mean it isn’t clean.

Although, I have to pretend like I’m not bathing with the remains of many ants.

I mean, I wipe up the carnage, but you know residue exists. There’s always residue after a killing. There are a zillion television shows based on this.

I don’t even care, though. The sketchy look of the tub, the ant killings, none of it matters. This is the best tub I have ever soaked in. I love this tub like I love movie popcorn and sleeping in.

Joey is across the country now. Why doesn’t he text? I haven’t heard from him in hours now. Since Joey is across the country, I don’t have to worry about closing the bathroom door. I can forget to wear my robe and it’s no big thing.

Randy misses Joey as much as I do, but he also likes having the house to ourselves.

For instance, tonight, when I was relaxing in my deep, lovely tub, he popped into the bathroom with his fingers in circles over his eyes like glasses.

Randy: These are x-ray glasses. I can see your skeleton.


Me: Remember how I told you I was tired and stressed out and I just want to lay in the tub for an hour?

Randy: Yes.

Me: This wasn’t part of my plan.

He put his finger glasses back on his face.

Randy: Ooh la la.

I’m reasonably sure we’ll settle in before long. This may not feel like home yet, but I still have that all over body buzz you get after a long, hot bath and that’s not so bad.


Photo courtesy of Hossam M. Omar





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  • Michelle,

    I was often told both as a child and an adult – “Home is where you hang your hat.” I have a lot of hats. If you need me to send you one I can. I have been told that that is a great saying, however, how many homes do I have?

    The tub has fun vibes. Re-glazed or not, you’ll make your own memories with it.

    The ants? Hmmm. As long as they’re not carpenter ants which will eat your new home? (I have experienced those.) Get a couple of those non-eco friendly ant traps and it will save you wasting tissue and squishing them.

    Thank you for the smile first thing in the morning. And you reminded me that I should check with my landlord to see if I have a home next month. (At the same price.)

    • I hope you still have an affordable home next month!! And thank you for the offer, but I so much do not have a hat head. I look goofy in hats. Or I just look goofy. Either way.

      We discovered diatomaceous earth at the old house. It’s food grade, so it won’t hurt us or the kitties, but it will kill the shit out of ants. We just haven’t gotten around to putting it down.

      • I second the diatomaceous earth. If they are big, black ones, then they are carpenter ants and you need to kill the shit out of them right away. The tub in our house has the same patina as the one in yours. Never looks clean, but haven’t reglazed yet. Still works fine for a long soak though! Congratulations on being there! We are having drywall done now, so it’s like being packed to move, but staying in the house and trying to escape eye watering fumes. We will all have comfy places to land soon. Welcome home!

  • Hey Michelle,

    I’ve been there. Murder is overrated. Once you’ve got one under your belt, the rest are easy. Just take care of that residue because now-a-days they can track you down with DNA thirty years later. LOL

    Best of luck in the new place. When your heart gets there, it will be your home.

  • Carpenter ants!!! They are not coming IN through the window. They live there. In your wall. Eating your house from the inside out. Speaking from horrific experience with a huge nest, also over the bathtub. We did not realize the extent of the problem until we remodeled, so I have no advice about how to get rid of them except EXTERMINATE!

  • All my best with combating the many challenges of settling into a new place. I’m so glad that you have a great sense of humor as part of your arsenal in this war on grime, ants, and x-ray glasses.

      • “Killing the other two ants wasn’t as bad because I couldn’t feel them squish. Also, I think it gets easier after the first time.”

        Good on you! I still can’t. I had to call my son to take care of a medium sized spider on the stairs yesterday. I was kind of hoping he might send it outside but I had no energy left to insist.
        I am so happy to hear you are settling in with no major issues. And enjoying your bath. Makes me smile.

  • Ah yes … Getting used to a new house and making it your home. I’m still in that stage and I moved into my new home a year ago. Time. It only takes time. Oh and changes to make the house “you” 🙂

  • After all these years how could Randy so badly misinterpret your needs? You didn’t need X-ray glasses, you needed a glass filled with some kind of liquid, preferably something alcoholic after all that ant-killing.
    You’ve earned it.

  • I guess I’m glad you’re getting used to killing.

    It always takes me some time to get used to new things. I bought a new vehicle a while back and I never thought I’d get used to it. I kept looking for my old car when I came out of the grocery store.

    Then I had to drive my old car for a day (my dad had bought it) and I realized it didn’t feel like mine anymore.

    It happens pretty quickly. Welcome to your new home!

  • I’m glad someone else said carpenter ants. Because get those fuckers taken care of. They had them in the house I was renting when my daughter was just little and I delayed the spraying because of it (you know because baby plus poison equals not good) – totally regretted when they got into my bed. And hers. Shudder. Good luck.

  • Yay for the tub, I couldn’t survive without one. Boo to the ants. I have to deal with an ant invasion in the bathroom and kitchen every year, but they aren’t those suckers. Hope you start to feel at home soon.
    I hope I can move soon too, need the right job first though 🙂

    • Oh sister, I have been watching your job search updates and I am pulling for you!!

      I painted the walls in the dining room today. It used to be peach and was painted in two different shades with very little rhyme or reason. Now they are a sort of putty color which is in the same family as the purple I am painting the living room. So far, so good.

  • Good luck with the ants. We have the little ones, and they sometimes find the cat’s food and swarm the floor around the dish. Briana usually vacuums them up to avoid spraying poison where the cat eats.
    Sorry I’m late with this comment, but we don’t have working internet right now and Jackie is letting me use her phone as a hotspot so I can post this…

    • ARGH! no internet is the worst!

      Yeah, I’m going to have to call a professional, but they can’t treat the inside of the house because I’m not poisoning my cats.

  • Have you tried Mr. Clean Magic eraser in the tub? It’s the best cleaning invention ever!! It should be called Mr. Clean Miracle eraser

By Michelle

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