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When I heard that Hillary Clinton found comfort in watching a particular HGTV show real estate reality show, I don’t think I’d seen the show in question for more than a minute, so I didn’t quite get how it could be comforting. Now that my husband and I have recently purchased a fixer-upper house, I, too, take solace in watching Love It or List It. Those hosts get much more done in an hour than we do, so that part just makes me agitated. The solace comes from seeing how icky so many people’s houses are.

quite the denouement

quite the electrician

I’ve decided to start our own reality real estate show: Torch It or Trash It.

It’s been a couple of weeks of taking care of what’s on top and what’s on the bottom and everything in between. Roof leaks, sewer gas smells, gas stove servicing, annual termite inspection, car issues, trips to the dentist and the GYN.  I even made a colonoscopy appointment–though I made it for exactly the wrong day, so that will not stand. Too bad for you that I won’t go in to the fascinating details of the termite inspection since I need to preserve it for an upcoming column. Who can say what I’ll share about the colonoscopy? Already have a food-related story regarding my husband’s colonoscopy. Think I’ll save it for later. It isn’t even gross, so that’s disappointing. Donuts were involved. I can see the Krispy Kreme marketing campaign now….

Perhaps it’s because I work at home so often and am alone for long stretches that I tend to like conversing with worker guys when they’re here. Today my gas stove guy gave me a new lunch combo to try: cottage cheese and fresh-picked tomatoes. I was about to put cherries and blueberries in some cottage cheese for breakfast and he suggested I try my fresh-picked tomatoes next time. Will do. He broke into a big smile about how good that combo tastes. I’m on it. One summer taste that I can almost grasp with my mind and mouth leaning in the direction of southern New Jersey– Raisin bread, Miracle Whip, Land-o-Lakes white American Cheese and a couple of slabs of a Jersey tomato. OH. GOOD. Too bad the only thing my mouth is near is a pad of paper. It needs to be eaten in New Jersey anyway, so I’ll have to wait. And then I’ll really see a cottage in its dotage….

for the sort of husband I have from the sort of wife I am. It isn’t the sexiest present. It isn’t the most expensive. It’s not hand-made or home-cooked, but it is pretty durned thoughtful. You don’t have to go to a store to purchase it. And after you purchase it, you don’t even own it, so that’s weird. It does have wheels, but it’s not a new car–or even a motorcycle or the classic bike under the Christmas tree. Nope, so much better.  Next-day delivery, even, which surprised me at 9 a.m. the morning after I ordered it online at 9 p.m. It will be appreciated year-round, so that’s something. It is in the home improvement category. Also the we really are getting older, huh? category. There’s a lot of stuff available in that category.

Love at first sight

This recycling container on wheels from Central Virginia Waste Management Authority made the man’s day–well in advance of Christmas. I still put a bow on it. Just like those Lexus commercials that I’m fairly sure everyone hates. I don’t like being put in a hateful mood at the holidays. And now I will never be in a hateful mood because we can get rid of our crappy collection of recycling bins and roll out the barrel!

There’s a new refrigerator in my kitchen as of yesterday, bigger and better than the fifteen year old model that didn’t close properly anymore.  The new fridge wears its black finish well–sleek and sharp.  It’s a looker, but when we bought it I didn’t realize that the shiny finish on this thing is mirrored, so every time I wind up in front of the fridge, hand outstretched to open the door to find something to feed my face, I see me staring back. Pause while I rethink that hunger pang.

I’m not a big fan of mirrors unless they are the funhouse thinning kind. Apparently I forgot to ask for that feature. Unintended consequence?  Sudden loss of appetite. It could be a stroke of weight loss genius.  Everyone’s refrigerator should be mirrored.

Why stop there? Really most of what I shouldn’t eat hides out in my painted, wooden kitchen cabinets. I’ve thought switching out some of the doors to artsy, wavy glass could be cool, but now I’m thinking every cabinet with food in it should have a mirrored door. Wowsa. Behavior modification at its simplest–though at some point I might be willing to poke my eyes out and go strictly by smell.

I’m back!