new house.

Aug. 12th, 2006 09:42 pm
crschmidt: (Default)
I love this room. (I'm currently in the living room, but the post wanders through the rest of the house.)

So we have two bookshelves. Each is filled to the top with books. They flank on either side our futon couch -- the same one I have spent so much time on since I met Jess just over three years ago. Behind me is a nice swivelly lamp that sits in front of the beautiful bay window.

Opposite that, we have the futon chair -- bought later, and as a result, the futon is much less torn to shit. There's a small nook to the right of that -- eventually it will have cushions, but right now it's just a bench.

To my right on the wall is a four cabinet sideboard -- plastic doors, glass shelving. Great for storing those video game systems that we have way too many of. Also acts as a bench. The stereo speakers will probably eventually go on each side, once i get everything set up.

To the left is the television: cabinet stores all systems and games and videos without showing any of them, and to the right another bookshelf. (We have a lot of books). The left wall also has the entryway to the door, which contains a small closet.

The ceiling is high, and tiled with one foot square tiles. The floor has a nice white shag carpet The middle of the room is taken over by our wonderfully sturdy coffee table -- the biggest reason I love this thing is that it is apparently impossible to destroy. Jess has had it for 4+ years, and I regularly sit on it with nary a wiggle.

All in all, this room is cozy, and I love the feeling of the compact shared space.

I keep walking through the rest of the house and being amazed. We finally cleaned out the dining room -- no more boxes -- and swept it, and I just looked around again in amazement at how beautiful it is. Large table, 6 chairs around it, desk on one side, beareau on the other, and a nice bay window at the end. To the left, two bedrooms -- the master bedroom, and down a short hallway, Julie's room, with the bathroom attached.

The bathroom, when we moved in, looked like crap. It was dingy, and looked like it wasn't cleaned the entire time the previous tenants had been living here. Now, however, it fucking sparkles. Jess's friend Erin, whose LiveJournal username I can't remember since I'm currently offline, has been helping us out a ton, with her boyfriend Andrew. Andrew spent 6 hours today working on that bathroom -- from cleaning up extra grout from the tiles to tidying the shower to scrubbing with bleach every inch of the room. A room which was previously the low point of the house has become a shining counterpoint to what it previously was.

The kitchen has a gorgeous open stainless steel pantry-type rack, filled with food -- cereals, teas, cooking supplies, etc. To your right as you enter is the fridge, and on the other side of that, the cat food dishes, as well as the (currently large) pile of garbage. TO your left you have a countertop (with a dishwasher!) several cabinets, etc. Like the rest of the house (other than bathrooms), the kitchen is hardwood floored. At the back of the kitchen to the left of the pantry rack is a small bathroom with nice ceramic tiles and a light purple paint, as well as containing a set of nice shelving in the wall which seems original. The stove is to the right of the pantry rack is the stove, and further right is the door to the basement and back courtyard area, which leads to a private area common to about 4 houses. The last bedroom is on the back of the left wall of the kitchen, and belongs to Alicia.

I love this house. I really have since when I set sight on the floors, but it continues to amaze me how great the house is. It's just great.
crschmidt: (Default)
Kristan moved out this weekend. I helped her get all her stuff in her new apartment, and even helped unpack until we ran out of places to put things. She's in a studio up in Salem, Mass -- it's a nice place, in the historic district. I don't know if I would be able to live in a studio now, but I definitely would have liked a little place like that when I was at UIUC.

It's strange to not have her here. After sharing our home with her for so long, it's a very weird experience to not have her consider this 'home' anymore. Even in the times that she wasn't living with us -- while she was at her mom's, away for whatever reason, or what have you -- home was always with Jess and I. She moved in about a month after I moved to Manchester, and she's just always been there.

We've changed houses. We've changed states. We've gone through a complete change in our relationship. But always, she lived with us.

Having her gone is a very big change.

I remember working at wedü, the first summer I was here, and I'd be the first one up in the morning. I remember getting up, checking my email on zeus (this was before I bought the mac), then giving Kristan a kiss on the forehead and Jess a kiss goodbye as I left for work. I remember watching movies together. I remember going out to Goldenrod together.

There were a lot of happy memories from the time that we lived together, but not many of them lately. Jess and Kristan can't share a house. Their personalities clash in millions of ways. There was so much tension in the house these days that there were times I wanted to run away to New Hampshire and just get away from it all. I know Jess felt the same way, and Kristan felt the same way. Really, we should probably have never all moved into the house in Cambridge -- we should have parted when Jess and I moved down here. But I don't think any of us had any idea how it would actually turn out. We knew that we were all friends, and we thought that it would be okay.

We're still friends, or at least, I think we will be after things settle down. There's still a lot of resentment flowing back and forth, and until that stops there's going to continue to be some tension in the relationship between Jess and Kristan, and therefore, between Kristan and I. That's to be expected. Things can't just snap into a place where suddenly life is perfect, and there's been a lot of ill done on both sides of the equation, far too much for things to just be normal and okay. But I think we'll get there, because although Kristan and Jess really can't live together, I don't think they really dislike each other. They just clash. Clashing is okay when one has a different place to go home to. Clashing is okay when it's a 5 minute thing -- it's not okay when it's a 24 hours a day thing.

But it's weird. It's weird because there were always little things that were done that don't have to be anymore, and little daily routines that are slightly shifted. Anyone who leaves -- for work, school, whatever -- gets a hug from me before they go. I'll run down flights of stairs just to give people a hug goodbye. And now there's one less person who I hug goodbye.

I give people a hug as they go up to bed -- and now there's one less person going up to bed.

It doesn't seem like much, but so much of it has built up for so long. Gestures made for the sake of peacekeeping. Shopping trips becoming a totally different experience. One less person that the kids say goodnight to before they go to bed.

I've had this feeling before -- both with [livejournal.com profile] pezstar and [livejournal.com profile] bluebuggy leaving. But neither has had that much of an impact on me mentally because I don't think I ever really thought of them as 'here to stay'. Kristan had just become an integral part of life in what used to be The Commune -- everything from the way she organized the dishwasher to helping jess pick which Whole Foods recipe to make. Without her here, things aren't the same. The conversations aren't the same.

She's still working in town, so she'll be around occasionally. She's still coming down to watch Gilmore Girls with Em and I tomorrow night. But the fact that the last two nights have been completely empty of Kristan has been strange, and I'll admit that it's lonelier here. It's so short a time -- there have been periods of days where I wouldn't see Kristan in the past. This shouldn't be a shock to the system. But just like when Jess is out late, and I fall asleep before she gets home, it's about the expectation that someone will just be there, whether you interact with them or not. It's going to be lonely for a while until I adjust to the fact that someone who has been a daily part of my life for almost two years is now no longer going to be there.

I'll miss her, but I won't miss the drama. I won't miss the fighting. I won't miss the constant back and forth bickering between the two females that I worry about the most in the world. I'm happy to have the house back to relative sanity. And I think that moving out is absolutely the best thing that Kristan could do for herself, both because of her interactions with Jess being unhealthy and the friendship that she and I had developed being unhealthy. There's a lot of negative energy there, and it's good to try and let it go, and I think this will help. I'm glad that she found someplace that I really think will work out okay for her, and I'm glad she had the guts to take it. Moving out on your own is not an easy step: I don't know if I'd have ever been able to do it. I never got the opportunity, and I'm okay with that, but it means I can't offer experience. I know that two years ago, she would never have gone out and found her own studio. So, things have definitely changed, and for the better.

I hope that they continue to change for the better for all of us. No matter how much I miss having that one extra person around, the time was well overdue to move on and out. I'm glad it worked out reasonably well, and I hope that it will be okay from here on out for all of us. There's so many more productive things to do than fight all the time.
crschmidt: (food)
EntrywayThis evening, I dined at Full Moon, in Cambridge, Massachusetts. This restaurant is a diversion from most of my experiences eating out, and a pleasant one. The food was top rate, the atomsphere was perfect, and the staff was helpful and friendly.

Full Moon is not your typical restaurant. A former fusion restaurant, it closed due to lack of business, and reopened with a wide pallette of interesting dishes and an unusual twist: It's extremely kids oriented. You wouldn't know it from the outside: It looks much like your standard Bisto/cafe style dining experience, right down to the abstract art on the walls. Once you take more than a few steps in, however, you'll realize this is no typical restaurant.

Alicia+Viking Hat In the corner is a full play area: Tabletop brio set, stuffed animals and dolls, 4 foot high dollhouse, and a full set of hats that would put the Village People to shame. The tables are covered with plain white paper, and adorned with crayons for coloring on it. Silverware is at the table - napkins available upon request. After choosing the "Fried Chicken Tenderloin" (aka Chicken Fingers), the kids ran off to play, Alicia coming back several times to let us know how things were going, and in one case to show off her Viking hat. Julie wandered and showed the toys she found to the other kids there - and almost all the tables were full of kids, 2-3 per family.

The food, although varied and really, quite odd, was delicious. Kristan had Salmon Pizza, I had a great nachos plate (which was probably an appetizer rather than an entree, but it fed me and that's enough for me), and Jess had a BBQ Chicken meal. All the food was good, in healthy sized portions that didn't leave anyone hungry.

Gigantic Cookie!One of the best parts of the whole meal was the dessert in my opinion: Gigantic cookies, tasty chocolate pudding cake, and amazing vanilla ice cream can really hit the spot after a good meal, and I really think that it's a top to a great evening.

The hours are short for adults, but perfect for kids (closing at 9), and although the location isn't great (about a 2 mile walk from Harvard Square) there is a bus route that runs right in front of it. The whole experience was great, and I would highly recommend it for anyone with kids. Childfree, however, should steer clear: this is a very kid-friendly place, to the extent that talking and so on is limited by the children running around and playing. If you don't like children, this isn't the place for you: it's a family location, and it is very clear from the second you walk in the door.

Additional photos (though not very many) in the Full Moon (Sep 16) set on Flickr.

Intraweb!

Jul. 14th, 2005 01:02 am
crschmidt: (geeky)
Speakeasy came through! This morning, woke up, plugged in DSL modem, and it lit up. Hooray, DSL!

Of course, it wasn't quite that simple. First, Speakeasy apparently doesn't do DHCP for its static IP customers. I liked this about MV: They did everything for me. Still, the information was on the packing slip, so I was able to put it in without a problem... except then it didn't work. Called Speakeasy support, got told that it was the wrong info. (Strange, since my userid was printed right on there...)

once I updated it, everything worked fine for about an hour, until Jenn woke up and got on dialup...

Since we don't have filters right now, that completely ruined the DSL line: 95% packet loss. (I didn't realize how neccesary those filters were.) Got Jenn offline and set everything up: the modem and router are now in her room, wireless seems to reach all over the house, wires reaching to kristan and jenn's computers. still have to work out something for zeus and hermes, but that'll be okay later, and I'm set for now.

So, the commune has internet! I plan on leaving the wireless open for the neighborhood (barring abuse), thanks to Speakeasy's TOS which supports the idea of sharing the internet. I'll probably set up a website that will advertise itself or something too. Maybe set up 192.168.1.1 and move the router: smart people will try that. I dunno, what would people suggest to try and set up a community site based around people who connect to a wireless router? Is there a way to send people to a captive page when they first show up? Is there some sveasoft firmware option for things like that?

I'd really like to be able to build a free wireless "neighborhood" around our hub, so people who stop by and grab access know who's providing it, and why, rather than just thinking I'm a moron who doesn't know how to set things up. I could provide things like local copies of software using zeus, or a local wiki... hrm.

Anyone have any experience setting up non-captive portals?

Commuting

Jul. 5th, 2005 08:00 am
crschmidt: (Default)
Today, I learned how to get out of Cambridge. It's less than 10 minutes to get out, and I made it to wedü in under an hour from the time I sat down in the car. (6:30 to 7:30.)

Yes, I was speeding the whole way. Yes, I was driving a box on wheels (94 Ford Aerostar). Yes, I am fucking exhausted due to being up too late last night.

Commuting sucks, but at least it's not really that bad of a run. I'll probably have to leave at about 7 to get out on time, but at least it's not the 3-4 hour commute that some people have going the other way.

Van is almost empty on gas, so I need to fill it before it goes far.

I did meet a whole bunch of people from foonet/#pugglewump, including [livejournal.com profile] xxv who I have been meaning to meet for many months. We did see very awesome fireworks from four-speed-of-sound seconds away. Julie wasn't even very scared. I am amazed at how big commune gatherings can quickly get: 6 communistas, Jason and Emily, one of Pez's boys, [livejournal.com profile] nostrademons, then Xavier, Tina, qsarahz (q and z silent), Mercutio and 2 other names I can't remember, followed by Alli(e?), Dan, and someone else on a bike. Our small group of 6 turned to 8 turned to 10 turned to 16 turned to 19 - with relatively little effort. Xavier also saw the commune 2.0, and the commune1.0 finally did get completely cleaned out - just stopping by to get the vaccum cleaner today before we go home.

I did have a good night.

I do live in Cambridge now, and I love it. I'm just really fricking tired.
crschmidt: (Default)
Today, I discovered via trial and error that we do not have a filterless coffee maker.

Emily and Jason are here now, Emmy aka [livejournal.com profile] bluebuggy will be here later, and [livejournal.com profile] nostrademons is supposedly going to be joining us at the fireworks. [livejournal.com profile] xxv will probably be around at some point, and I'm not sure if we're going to see [livejournal.com profile] ursamajor at all tonight or not.

The old commune is now empty. And I have to go unload the van.

Kitty

Jul. 1st, 2005 01:24 pm
crschmidt: (Default)
Kitty came back. He climbed in through an open window. No clue where he was, but he's safe. Thanks for all your well wishes.

Off work at 4:30, home to pack up what's left of the house, Van to cambridge, unload, split up, truck to Nashua, Van to Manchester, Jetta to Cambridge. Probably leaving the kids with Jess's mom tonight while we put together stuff like their beds and so on. Pick up kids tomorrow, then bask in the glow that is getting out of the house in Manchester.

I've not mentioned this a lot before, but part of the reason that I'm glad we're moving out is that the house in Manchester has some majorly bad vibes in it. The combination of the divorce and all of the stuff Jess has gone through in that house have absolutely destroyed it, energy wise. I don't typically believe in the supernatural, but this isn't supernatural in my mind: it is quite clear that the house has some serious ill effects on people who enter it. Packing only made things worse: it's as if all the spirits which had been trapped by the house were escaping, and attacking all of us.

I am very much looking forward to the new place. It's bigger, brighter, and in a wonderful place. I can't wait to be there. Most important, though, is that it doesn't have the bad energies that have been poured into Valley St. Hopefully they can let go and die now.

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