Paint Expectations (like Great Expectations…get it?)

This is a story about deciding what you want, and getting it.

Just kidding, this is a story about getting piss ass drunk, getting a wild idea, following through, and having a great outcome.

I know kids, it’s the feel good story of 20 friggin’ 14!

Most people associate “wild” ideas with getting tattoos, or getting married, or getting a car. What was my wild idea?

Re-painting the cabinets! I know, I hope you were all sitting down when you read that. It all started one Friday night, when the lady and I had a main entree of wine and a side of actual food, and of course were watching HGTV.

“You know what?!” I stuttered, reaching for the now sippy cup my wine was in (I had previously lost my privileges for drinking wine out of glass objects). I couldn’t tell if the lady couldn’t stop staring at my red stained teeth, or was just waiting for the synapses in my brain to piece together my next sentence.

“We should re- do the cabinets!” I declared ….and cue gesturing grandly, knocking over everything on the coffee table. I also lost the right to drink on the couch that night.

It wasn’t a horrible idea, in fact it was something I had always meant to do, but in the war of renovation, you have to pick your battles.

Previously, the cabinets were standard white, and stained with cooking disasters from the previous residents. I’ll put that hot mess here:

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Here are my steps for successfully re-painting your cabinets:

1. Decide what color you actually want to paint them. I suggest doing this sober, as our drunken color ideas were probably not too solid. In the end, we decided to do an off white on the top, and a gray on bottom. I know, crazy right?

2. Go to Lowes, and try to resist the urge to not gauge your eyes out with a paint stirrer when you see that there are indeed one MILLION shades of white, and two BILLION shades of gray. Insert Fifty Shades of Gray joke here. Actually, more like Fifty Shades of WHAT THE FRIGGITY FRACK IS THE DIFFERENCE?!

3. After successfully leaving your eyeballs in tact, laugh at all the ridiculous names of the paint samples. Seriously, the white we chose was called Quail Egg.

I know, just let that sink in. I would love to know what poor Lowes Employee had to crawl their ass up a tree to see what color a Quail Egg is?!

4. Sit for a week pondering about how in the actual hell you are going to paint the entire kitchen. Doubt yourself. Doubt your existence.

5. Finally, come to your senses and wait till your one day Father-in-Law visits, and just so happens to be a cabinet maker. Make sad eyes. Conveniently have to go to work so that girlfriend and father can bond, and paint cabinets.

6. Come home and obsess over beautiful cabinets.

I know, I know, I totally opted out of that one. But would they really have been that beautiful if I had helped? Probably not. The reason this has taken so long to post (other than the fact I’ve been too busy drooling over cabinets) is that we also go a kitchen full of brand new appliances!! And a big reveal wouldn’t be the same without them. So here it is!!

 

My two favorite things: coffee and non leaking fridges.

My two favorite things: coffee and non leaking fridges.

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After having to listen to a dishwasher that sounds like cannon fire every time it runs, this is a dream come true. If anyone needs me, I’ll be drinking wine and staring at the kitchen.

I’m still drinking it out of a sippy cup.

-C

If anyone is interested in learning more about kitchen painting, drinking a ton of wine, or both, please feel free to comment!

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The Turkey-pacolypse: Thanksgiving 2014

Hello campers,

I’m sorry for the amount of time it took for me to write this all, but I just woke up from my wine and leftover food coma that I’ve been in for the week. I hope everyone’s Thanksgivings were great! In case you were interested, this is how my first Thanksgiving away from home went:

Actually, everything turned out awesome! Surprising, because usually everything I touch breaks or bursts into flames, but thankfully I have found a lady who is pretty much Martha Freaking Stewart. We started prepping everything the Monday before Thanksgiving, and we found this to be incredibly helpful. As I found, you will have way more things to do on the actual Thanksgiving day, so anything you can prep before hand helps. Here’s what we prepped in advance:

Place settings- I was informed that Chinet and China were not the same thing.

Place settings- I was informed that Chinet and China were not the same thing.

Finally got to use my Fancy place mats!

Finally got to use my Fancy place mats!

 

We also decided to put the food out onto the bar of our kitchen, because our kitchen is tiny, and there was no way we are all going to get in there to stuff our faces. We used a chalkboard runner, which is AWESOME because you get to draw and write all over it! It made for a really easy and creative way to display all the food. Doesn’t hurt that it was also 10 bucks!

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Because wine is important, and should always be clearly marked

Because wine is important, and should always be clearly marked

My AMAZING sangria!

My AMAZING sangria!

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The chalkboard paper ended up working great, and was ridiculously easy to do. For anyone who isn’t very crafty (me) it is an easy way to spice up the table!

Yeah, yeah, yeah….but how did the turkey look?

Well, after about five hours of worrying and googling everything turkey related, I would say it turned out pretty awesome. The reason is probably because I had nothing to do with the turkey, except making it dance on the counter top. The lady was not impressed. But here it is!

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I’m not a turkey expert, but that’s a good looking turkey!

 

To say the least, after a combination of turkey, sangria, and everything else, I was in a catatonic state to say the least. But the day itself was relaxing and full of time to think about what the holiday is really about. It’s about having someone that loves you enough not to kill you for dressing up the turkey. It’s for the Dad who doesn’t mind 40,000 phone calls about what on earth giblets are, or if there are illegal substances smuggled into a sketchy bag inside of the turkey (no worries, they weren’t!). I think that it’s so easy to get wrapped up in work and school, that it’s important to have a day to relax and enjoy each other’s company. I’m so happy I got to spend Thanksgiving with the person I love, and that we’ll have many more to celebrate.

 

What I'm really thankful for (PS, the lady is on the right, if you can't tell!)

What I’m really thankful for (PS, the lady is on the right, if you can’t tell!)

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Also thankful for this.

I hope you enjoyed this post, and had a great holiday! On the next episode of The Hot Mess Express…..

THE KITCHEN REDEMPTION, or the kitchen cabinets get re painted.

Stay tuned. It could get ugly.

-C

 

To the one I never Met

To the one I never met-

I never met you, yet I have stared at your picture countless times.

I always wonder if you looked like the photographs.

I never met you, but I’ve heard stories of you.

Each one different, tinged in happiness and in sadness.

I never met you, but I wondered what you were like.

Were you the good stories, or the bad stories, or both?

I never met you, but you made me angry.

How could you cause such destruction so whimsically?

I never met you, but you made me sad.

Didn’t you ever tire of living life like a two sided mirror?

I never met you, but you saved me.

You brought me to someone who made me whole when I was nothing but organs encased in skin.

I never met you but I wish I had.

You seemed chaotic and stoic and wild and calm all at the same time.

You were a hurricane of emotions, wonderful and terrifying all at once.

I never met you, but I wish I could talk to you.

I wish I could tell you that everything ended up alright.

I never met you, but I feel a strange connection to you.

You were the catalyst that made my life better, and without you, there’d be no her.

I never met you, but I wish I could thank you.

You taught her to love, and to enjoy life. You taught her to be brave, and to hold tight to the things she believed in.

And in return, she taught me those things too.

A Great Day for South Carolina and Equality

Have you ever had a day that started out horribly? That made you dread just what fresh hell the rest of the day could bring?

That was my morning. You see, my lady and I seem to be running a close business to Noah’s Ark in our home. We have 2 cats, and a dog (which you saw earlier) and about 1,000 sq ft to contain them.

I know, we might be animal hoarders. In case you want a look at the critters, I’ve put them below:

 

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Dennis the Dog

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Thing 1 and Thing 2

 

The cats are the rulers of the roost, and though Dennis the Dog is rather big, he still cowers at the sight of the two kitties. The kitty that made my morning so miserable is the large black one. This demon’s name is Mishka. You could say Mishka values the finer things in life. For example, refusing to drink water out of a bowl, and only from a running faucet. He also likes to sing opera at odd hours of the morning. Which is exactly what he did this morning, at 5 AM. Though he does a mean rendition of Pucnini, it was not the way I wanted to wake up.

To make matters worse, our garbage disposal also decided to go on the fritz this morning. Why, world, why? I am gloriously domestically challenged, and by that I mean that I thought “check engine” in your car meant to physically check to see if the engine was there.

I’m pretty dumb.

Aside from these two setbacks, I went to work, only imagining what else could go wrong. But, I got a pleasant surprise. A Federal Judge in Columbia, SC has overturned SC’s marriage ban!!! In case you want the details, the link is here. This is huge for gay couples in the state, and obviously for me. You see, I grew up under the impression that the role of government was to reward the people for following the rules. So i followed them. I stayed in school, went to a public university (go cougars!) and got a job after graduation. And I cry every time my paycheck arrives cut in half from taxes. I did all the right things, but I couldn’t marry in my home state. Explain to me how that’s fair?

Human Rights Campaign

I am so overjoyed that South Carolina has finally realized that all kinds of love, are indeed love. When I think about marrying my lady one day, i don’t think about the fact that she’s a woman. I think about how great of a person she is, and all the adventures we will have. I think it’s time our views of marriage shift from a definition of gender, to qualities like fidelity and commitment. If two people are committed and wanting to spend their lives together, isn’t that enough?

To say the least, today’s events have made my day much better. This morning, I couldn’t marry in my home state, and now I can! What a great moment for equality, and South Carolina.

The Tricky Art of Being Yourself

I think as children we always have ideas of what we will be like as adults, what our lives will be like. For some reason, I imagined myself being a lot taller.

But I never imagined myself being gay. This doesn’t necessarily mean that I wasn’t gay then, in retrospect, I see now that there were clues all along. I always grew up being told that I should always strive to be myself, and no one else.

As I have discovered as an adult, this is much easier said than done.

Once I realized I was gay at the ripe old age of 17 (making high school really fun) I was faced with a moral dilemma. Because unfortunately in the small town I grew up in, being yourself did not mean being your gay self. What if being myself didn’t fit in with other’s expectations? I struggled through college with this idea as well. Basically i had two selves: my straight self and my real self. Suddenly being yourself felt like keeping the world’s biggest secret. It means constantly having to fabricate excuses and lies and pronouns to cover the truth. And I’m not that clever to begin with, so this was really difficult for me. But humor aside, secrets are heavy. After years of carrying them, i felt my back straining under the weight. So I made a decision when I began coming out to my family and friends, that I would only be my real self.

I did this about as gracefully as I would dance in the Russian Ballet.

It was awkward, and clumsy and horrible. How do you say, “i know i’ve been telling you i’m straight all these years, but actually i am utterly and completely gay. any questions?”

There were lots of questions, and lots of feelings. But with all of these awkward and uncomfortable moments, i realized that one by one I was shedding the secrets that had made their home on my back for so long. As each one disappeared, I walked a little taller, and I felt a little lighter.

When I started to be myself, I thought the world would end and the town’s folk would chase me out of the city with pitchforks. But really, it was the opposite. I moved to a liberal city and was met with a lot of support and acceptance. Life went on, and I went on. Looking back now, I can’t imagine going back to that double life, not when my life is so great now.

I’m not a therapist, nor am I qualified to give any advice. Unless you need help choosing a clearance wine at Target on 8:00 on a Tuesday night, cause I’ve got your back!

However, I do have experience, and experience has taught me this. No matter how scary or how unorthodox it is, being your authentic self is the absolute best thing in the world. Because that self is the most beautiful version of you. I hope if you’re reading this and going through anything similar, know that you’re not alone. There’s a community who all have your back. If anyone reading this ever needs someone to listen, my proverbial door is always open. I would say physically, but it’s cold y’all and heat ain’t cheap! I’ve put the link to my bio page here, and this includes my contact info. Trust me, I’ll do a happy dance in my fuzzy slippers if I hear from you!

I hope that wasn’t too preachy. Or stupid. It was probably both.

-Celeste

Veterans Day

Good Morning All,

So, while I’m trying to get my wits about me and this writing everyday business, I’ve been thinking a lot about the overall process of writing. I think that everyone writes differently, and every creative process is unique. I envy those who write novels, because I don’t know if I could ever commit myself to a long and well thought out story. My tales are always short and spastic, much like me in general. But I have discovered that we have to write about topics that mean something to us. Today, my mind is on veterans day, so that’s what I’ll be rambling about.

My father was in the Navy, and my grandfather in the Air Force. I grew up hearing stories about deployments and cruises. In my childhood mind, it all sounded romantic really. I remember my mother telling me that when she was a child, my grandfather was stationed in Spain. She recalls one Christmas Eve that he was able to call home, and could barely be understood because of the reception. However, as soon as my Mom was on the line, my Grandfather says that her voice was as clear as a bell. It made one difficult holiday away a little less difficult.

Shortly after my parents married, my Dad was sent to flight school to train as a flight surgeon. The Navy had paid his way through Medical school, and in return, it was his time to serve. Though he has always has spoken about the places he saw and the experiences he otherwise might’ve not had, I cannot imagine the dread that hung in the air the day they had to say goodbye. Coming from someone who cried their eyes out when leaving for study abroad, I cannot imagine the weight of watching that person walk away. These couples, and these have families have my infinite respect. I’m not that strong or that selfless, but thankfully there people out there that are.

I think it’s important to recount these stories, especially on a day like today. I think that storytelling is a lost art, and these stories effectively are the dusty mementos that become locked in the old trunks of our minds. I think actively recounting these stories is a way of digging up these trunks, opening them, and dusting off the souvenirs. I think it’s something we all need to do. I’ve recounted stories to myself dozens of times, but there’s something about telling a story that makes us really feel something. The good stories make us nostalgic, and the bad ones show us how far we’ve really come. So ask someone, especially a person currently serving or a veteran, to dust off some stories. Chances are, you’ll make their day, and it might just make yours as well. I think we’re all full of stories that are as unique as our DNA.

I know that had nothing to do with anything I said I wanted to write about, but I have to get these thoughts out somehow okay?!

Thank you for reading, please comment, and I will hopefully have more stories and ramblings up soon! Remember I’m always up for suggestions!

Hallelujah- it’s the weekend

Well, it was the weekend. Sorry for the late post you guys! ­čÖé

I don’t know about y’all, but weekends are sacred days for me. I work full time, and Monday through Friday, and by Friday I usually feel like I may just lose my mind. Fridays I think are the greatest days because they hold the promise of NOT having to wake up early the next day. Note: if you work on the weekend, I apologize, you brave souls.

What do you guys do when you’re not at work/school? Personally, I’m an errand runner. Usually during the week, I’m way too tired to deal with any of those pressing adult things. What do these things include? Ya know: laundry, cooking, peeling one’s self off the couch after guzzling wine. I’m not the only one who does that right?

Personally, it’s been a crazy ass couple of weeks. I know I just started blogging, so I’m going to try to bring you up to speed on the hot mess express that’s been rolling around here:

Working Hard or hardly working?

Working Hard or hardly working?

1. We got new windows in our condo! We signifies my lady and I- yes, we live together. This wouldn’t normally be a huge deal, but A. we live in a tiny condo and B. this has needed to be done since I bought the condo. As I quickly discovered, you have to choose your battles in the war of condo renovation. The process of replacing the windows meant two days filled with dust and two very upset cats. But it’s done, yay!

2. We got a dog! I know, two cats and we are adding another?? But we can’t help it! We rescued him from the Charleston Animal Society and he’s been the best boy! His name is Dennis, and we think he is a hound. He’s too cute and just follows us around the condo. He had some infections, and is just finishing a heart worm treatment, but is otherwise doing well!

So, in light of these busy past few weeks, I am looking forward to being lazy and not doing anything. What do you guys like to do on the weekends?

This post is also to gain some ideas from you all about what kinds of posts you would like to see. Do you like hearing about LGBT things? Life things? ┬áStrange streams of consciousness like this post?? If i’m rambling, i’d like to be rambling about something that people will want to read. ┬áSo I’d appreciate it if you left a comment for me! Not like I’ll be waiting right by my computer or anything….

Yes, yes I will.

Have a lovely weekend you beautiful cherubs you!

-Celeste