So there was a fun mishap on Saturday where I couldn’t get in the building at work due to something with the door code. At least I was able to come back home and work here, but still, not great.

The good news is it meant I was able to have lunch with Julie, who was in town for a bridal shower I got out of couldn’t make it to. She and Paul had plans to grab lunch, so they got takeout and I spent my half-hour break hanging out on the deck with them. Julie and her boyfriend, Michael, got engaged earlier this summer and are in the early stages of wedding planning, so we were chatting about that and mommy dearest. Like me, Julie doesn’t want a bridal shower because, like me, she doesn’t need the stuff, so we’ll see how that plays out.

In the evening, Paul and I went for a long walk on a nearby trail, then stopped over at the mall since we were really close to it, then in the morning made our weekly trip to the coffee shop in town and headed up to the mountains for another couple hours of hiking. When we were done, we went to my parents’ house for a bit.

I spent my Monday off enjoying a day at home, and man, waking up and walking down the hall of my house is great. So is the fact that the moving is done, although muscle memory is powerful–although neither of us has gone to the apartment instead of the house, we’ve both had some close calls.

This weekend, Brandon gets back from three weeks away doing military training, and the plan is for a Sunday zoo trip.

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I accidentally gave myself a four-day weekend. I forgot that I’d be starting my weekend rotation and would have Monday off, and then I’d taken Tuesday off just to use a day. The only reason I picked that day was because not a ton of other people were off, so it worked, and thus, accidental four-day weekend.

And really, the only thing we did was go to a joint birthday part for Terra and her niece, Betty, which was fun. We hung out with her and Jon, were entertained by the kids, Jacob and Katie came for a bit, it was a good time. And the rest of the weekend was pretty much downtime.

It’s nice to finally not have an apartment to have to clean out, so having any downtime at all was nice, let alone more or less four days of it. Monday and Tuesday I mostly just spent at home hanging out and doing some stuff like writing, with a little gym time in the evenings.

For the near future, that’s probably how things are going to be. The perk of Saturday rotation is that because no one else has Mondays off, it forces me to stay home and chill for a day, and at least for the next few weeks, we have no set plans. I’m hoping maybe we’ll get to the movies and stuff like that, but it’s nice to have an open schedule and a little freedom that way for the first time in a couple months.

At last, the apartment lease is up and all of the moving is done. Up to now, we’ve been doing small trips to clean and pack, mostly leaving once the car is full, and then the last few days we’ve been working harder at doing more. I got really, really frustrated with it Monday night because although we at least weren’t moving the bulk of our stuff in a hurry, we were more rushed than I wanted. We closed right at the end of March and my goal this whole time was to get shit done in chunks to avoid the exhaustion we’re feeling now, so I had a nice moment of extreme frustration Monday night, especially thinking about how slow a process it was to get the floors done and how much that held things up.  Fortunately, I have an attentive husband who knew going to get tacos as a late dinner would mostly fix things.

The next step is to unpack all the shit, but I’ve declared we’re not doing anything at least through this weekend. We’re worn out and frankly, the idea that, like, we’re going to have nothing but quiet evenings in the house for the foreseeable future is weird. What do you mean we don’t have to pack and clean at the apartment?

But we’ve had some fun, too. My company picnic was last weekend, so we enjoyed a second free trip to Kennywood this summer, and a few hours later, my mom and I went to see Erasure. She spent the night–and let me tell you, is it great to have a spare bedroom to stick visitors until we have kids–and we hit this spot for a very late breakfast that was really lunch that I’ve been meaning to try for a long time, they just keep difficult hours. They open and close early which is perfect for people working in town, but it means it’s not really an option for evenings or weekends. But it was nice on a Monday off to fuel up for work around the house. Mom helped rearrange some furniture and store some stuff up in our tiny attic space, and that’s one of those extra spaces we gained that’s great. We had a small storage unit in the basement of the apartment, but this attic runs the length of most of the house. You can’t fully stand up in it, but it’s perfect for storing seasonal items and luggage and stuff.

Most of this last weekend was devoted to moving and cleaning, but Mom and I took a few hours to go see the new Mamma Mia, which was a good time. The Onion’s review kind of nails it. It also managed to replace the Erasure songs that had been in my head on a loop.

The one silver lining in this chaotic moving week is that it’s made it go by fast–I was surprised to realize it’s Wednesday. Our only weekend plans are a birthday party, and due to some accidentally brilliant scheduling, I’ve got a four-day weekend. Sure, I’ll get shit done because I can’t not because that’s just who I am, but man, is it nice to know that at the end of a few days of cleaning and packing and moving, I have a block of four whole days where I’m only committed to going somewhere for a few hours. And it’s so fucking nice.

It’s been an eventful couple of weeks–first, the weekend after the 4th, we had the Internet set up and started staying at the house, even though we were mostly confined to the bedroom while we waited for the rest of the floors to go in. They’re done now, and all that’s left is new molding and vents. We’re holding off on getting all the furniture moved in until that’s done, but we did at least pull out the kitchen table and chairs, so we have somewhere to sit and eat and we’re not living out of one room.

We got the news at work that we were gonna be able to transition over to working from home, so after working some weird hours to get trained on some new processes last week, I’m on Day 3 of working from home. It’s about as nice as everyone who wants to work from home thinks it is. The convenience is too great, and I think I’m gonna eat a little better as a result. For some reason, I have more of an appetite when I’m in the office as opposed to home–it’s something I noticed even on days off. So far, I’ve eaten less for lunch at home than I ever have at the office, and I’m eating an actual breakfast. It’s really nice so far. Even working overtime feels less draining because hey, I’m at home. As soon I finish up and clock out, I’m done and free the rest of the evening. And I like to think that if I’m not wearing makeup daily, my skin will be amazing, and if I’m not having to be seen in public, I can really make my fun dyed hair last.

The weekend was simple–graduation party and hanging out with the siblings-in-law Saturday night, house stuff most of the rest of it. There are a few projects we still ought to tackle, but for the most part, everything we wanted to do is done and now it’s just a matter of cleaning the apartment and moving in. We’re swiftly running out of time and shit’s sneaking up on us, but we’ve been going over daily and hauling out bags of clothes and boxes of books and any other items we can throw in the car and move on our own. The goal is to get it down to just big pieces of furniture we can’t get on our own, then have help with those. Maybe we can tackle big stuff this weekend, but based on the slow progress of everything else so far, I’m betting it’s gonna be a rush the very last weekend on our lease, which is exactly what I really, really wanted to avoid. And hey, I did what I could.

This weekend, it’s the company picnic, then I scream myself hoarse when Erasure comes to town. Mom’s offered to help move stuff next Monday, so we’ll see. It would definitely be helpful, but the apartment is a hot mess and I don’t know if I want her in there. The good news is moving gives you a good excuse to be a mess.

Progress on the house has ramped up a bit this week. Floor installation is at last full speed ahead–we’re still not quite ready to move in, but some rooms are done and ready at least for some boxes and small pieces of furniture to go in. We were hoping to be ready to move in this weekend, which didn’t work out, but maybe next. At the very least, bedroom furniture gets delivered Wednesday and we’ll still need to order a mattress after that, but once that’s in, we can sleep there, even if we still have things to get out of the apartment.

So since yesterday ended up not being move-in day, we headed out to a bar back towards our parents’ places–which we still call “home” a lot–to see my friend Emily’s boyfriend play a little acoustic set and had ourselves a grand time. Hung out, had some drinks, heard some tunes.

Today was housework/errand day. There’s not much left to do in the place right now, but we are having to regularly cut the grass now, so we’ve been doing that every few days or so. With our new battery-powered mower, we get a good chunk of the yard cut before the battery needs charged, but with nothing to do while it charges, we usually just wait and come back later to finish. So this afternoon was dedicated to the very back of the yard, where I didn’t make it yesterday, plus laundry and grabbing a few gardening tools. We ended up making a couple trips back and forth, but the good thing is we stopped at the apartment in between and took a couple boxes full of things over to the house. The goal is to slowly empty the place of non-necessities so that come time to move furniture and then ultimately the end of the lease, it’s easy to do and we’re just left with going through junk and cleaning. The funny thing is as things get carried out of the apartment, it looks much cleaner and more organized. I keep joking that we’ll have everyone over when it’s half empty so they’ll have a much higher opinion of it than they would if they’d walk through the door this very moment.

We’d like to keep doing that throughout the week, as long as we’re not in Paul’s dad’s way while he finishes the floor. I think we can make respectable progress.

I’m usually pretty good about reading my body and listening to it, but I fucked up this week and I’m home sick yet again, just a few weeks after having an ear infection. The good news is at least it’s not another ear infection.

The thing is, I woke up the day after my cousin Casey’s wedding with a bit of a sore throat, but I dismissed it. I was at a wedding, talking over a DJ (which is why when we picked a half-indoor, half-outdoor venue, we opted not to have the music piped outside, and I think this is one of the smartest decisions we made for the day), drinking, dancing, and running all over the place running errands, so I kind of figured I just wore my throat out.

The day after a wedding is not an ideal day for a company picnic at Kennywood, but it’s free, so who cares? While we were getting ready to go, my dad texted to say he and my mom were stopping in town for breakfast on their way home from their post-wedding hotel stay and that we were welcome to join, so we took them up on it, bought Paul new walking shoes since he wore a hole in his current ones, then made it to the park by early afternoon. Getting there when it opens is the better plan, but again, free trip, and my company’s picnic is at the same place next month, so there wasn’t a lot of pressure to cram in a lot.

The thing with me and amusement parks is I’ll gladly go on some low-intensity rollercoasters and can be peer-pressured into riding, like, proper thrill-seeker coasters. But the thing with my husband is he is not the thrill-seeker type, so if one of us says, “I don’t want to ride that,” the other is a little took okay with it. The exception is he wants to go on the Skycoaster, where you go up in a harness and go down with a ripcord, kind of like a bungee-jump-type deal, and…nope. It’s not the height so much as they way people swing a ton after the initial drop, and I already can’t handle rides that swing, like pirate ships or this other ride that’s just a huge swing that puts you parallel to the ground eventually. It’s one of the few things that makes me feel sick. That and excessive spinning.

Weather-wise, it wasn’t the greatest day for an amusement park. We never got a proper rain, but we had some drizzle and skies dark enough that they shut down some rides temporarily, including one just after we’d made it on. Still, though, we were able to ride everything we wanted, and we had a fun time.

Plus I was off Monday–I have three weeks of vacation time now and I’ve barely used any, so whenever I want a day off from here on out, I’ll request a second one, too. So I gave myself an extra long weekend, which was especially nice with a wedding one day and a trip to Kennywood the next. I really need downtime in my weekends, so taking off Monday gave me both that and Sunday to just kind of lounge. And cut grass at the house, and it turns out I kind of enjoy cutting grass. I mean, a fancy, brand-new self-propelled lawnmower helps, but still.

This is probably the most stereotypical first-world thing one could say, but man, it can be hard to use three weeks of vacation time and three floating holidays in a year when you have no travel plans.

I mean, we’ve talked about taking a vacation, but because I’m a genius who decided to plan a wedding and buy a house less than a year later, we’ve just kind of been busy with one thing after another. But when one of your cousins gets married on a Friday, even when it’s minutes away from your work and you could easily only take off an hour or so, you think, “Fuck it, I have the days,” and not only take that day off, but you take the following Monday, too. Because why not give myself a few four-day weeks in a row? I’m probably doing it again next week after a concert.

This is why we didn’t do a Friday wedding, by the way. We didn’t want to deal with the schedule shuffling.

Meri came in for the wedding but was only gonna be around for a few days, so one of the ways opting for that Friday off paid off was that it freed me up to stay out late Thursday night and hit up trivia night out at Bud Murphy’s. It ended up being a small thing–just me, Nolan, Meri, and Emily–but it was nice and fun, although we didn’t win, and at least we got to hang out outside of the wedding.

The downside, as I told those cousins, was I’d said we’d make cookies, and after a few things during the week preventing me from doing the last batch, I ended up doing it the morning of the wedding.

Paul and I both ended up going all over the place Friday morning. He went into work for a half-day, and I stayed at the apartment to do a batch of lemon cookies. Now, I’d gotten a lemon–a whole damn lemon–with Greek food from the farmers’ market the week before and didn’t use it, so I had it for me cookies. Except I left it at the house. The good news is the house is just a 10-minute drive from the apartment, so I was able to go over real quick, but it just made the morning kind of a pain in the ass. I was planning to go over later in the day to do laundry, but since I had a batter started before I realized I didn’t have my lemon, I decided not to bother doing stuff like that and to do it later. So I got my lemon, made my cookies, gathered the laundry, stopped at the house, put the laundry in, pulled other cookies out of the freezer, took all the cookies to the hotel, went to the gym, and in between all that, I hoped Paul could stop at the house to move the laundry to the dyer to save me some time, but he had some mishaps of his own and basically went the wrong way down the highway on two separate trips.

The good news is the rest of the day went a lot smoother. We got all dressed up, headed over to the very lovely wedding, and drank and danced most of the night. He kind of crashed and got really tired and I wanted to keep going, but with most of the cousins and my brother gone, I had no one to dance and drink with. Plus it was almost over and we had his company picnic the next day, so we went home.