Five on Friday


Ok, I know I’ve posted enough about our cabinets here and here, but I have even more updates. The guy who was designing and ordering our cabinets gave me a call yesterday, and that definitely helped ease my mind even more, because I know that he knows what he’s talking about. He gave me more details about our kitchen cabinets. Turns out we weren’t notified about the back order of our cabinets because he thought our order got put in early enough not to be affected. He realized I probably had a near heart attack (I did), and apologized, but he didn’t even know we had got the back order substitute until my e-mail to the builder was forwarded on to him. Turns out the bathroom vanities were his mistake. We’ve decided to keep the sarsaparilla in the Jack & Jill bathroom. Our master bathroom has sarsaparilla, and we’re using the same granite and paint colors in both areas, so I know it will still end up matching all of our other selections. Unfortunately, the sarsaparilla will not work in the basement bathroom, so an umber replacement has been ordered. 

In other wonderful cabinet news, Dave went out and checked on the house yesterday and found that all the cabinets for his wet bar have been installed! (Before only the lower cabinets have been installed, not the upper cabinets). He’s thrilled with how they look, and from the pictures, I’m thrilled too. 



What I haven’t mentioned yet about the house progress in all the progress that’s being made on the interior trim. Last time I was at the house on Wednesday most of our baseboards were up, and most of our interior doors had been installed. I didn’t have a camera with me on that trip because we went when it was dark outside, but I made Dave take is camera out last night and he took some pictures (but not everything I want to put up on the blog). So I’ll probably have a bigger post dedicated to this stuff soon, but here’s a little sneak peek:

I swooned when I saw the trim on the coffered ceiling in the great room.
I swooned when I saw the trim on the coffered ceiling in the great room.

There are a few things I’ve been really excited about with regards to the interior trim, one of which was our coat closet doors. I know that sounds boring, but they’re seriously amazing. When we were going through our initial design of things with the sales rep, she recommended putting in 8′ doors on the coat closet. We don’t have a gigantic entryway or anything, but when you come in the front doors, the coat closet is in that entryway area, along with the entrance to Dave’s study, the staircase, and the open archway entrance into the great room. Because our front doors are 8′ tall, she convinced us that having all the rest of the doors in that area being 8′ tall would make everything flow better and also look a little more grand. Holy cow, she was sooooo right. I am so grateful that a) we were given that advice and b) that we took the advice.  

Unfortunately we have run into one little interior trim issue. I don’t even know if I should call it an “issue” because it’s okay. it’s just not what we were expecting. In our specifications we had added a bunch of trim around the entrance to Dave’s office, which was also under the heading of “making the entrance area look beautiful.” My office nook is right by the door to the garage, and it’s definitely not getting any special treatment. Of course Dave loved anything that involved making his office more “opulent” (which is probably his favorite word in the entire dictionary). Seriously though, I think Dave is getting one of the most opulent home offices that I’ve ever seen. He’s got a vaulted ceiling with a skylight, two windows with great views, and two french doors. But back to the “issue”….we noticed the trim definitely did not match the specifications. It’s nice…we still have the french doors, and they put a window thing above the french doors to make it 8′ tall….but we were supposed to have pillars. Yes, pillars. I told you it was opulent. So I e-mailed the builder, asked what the deal was, and it turns out that there wasn’t space to put in the pillars. But he said if we wanted to meet next week we could figure out how to “beef it up a bit” (his words, not mine). So on Monday morning we’ll be learning how Dave’s office entrance can be “beefed up” into a more opulent style. 


Yesterday I went for my second injection into my sacroiliac (SI) joint. My activity is limited for the rest of the day, hence why Dave got to go take a look at the house yesterday and I was relegated to looking at his pictures. I got my first injection at the beginning of December, and my next (and last) one is scheduled for early February. Unfortunately, if my pain isn’t fixed by that point in time, we’re going to have to “reevaluate.” Given that I’ve already failed physical therapy, osteopathic manipulative therapy, and a sacrolumbar belt (that was not fun), “reevaluate” is code for “consider surgery.” Despite the I’ve had 3 perfectly normal looking MRIs of my back in the past several years, the report of the last one says that the L5 joint in my spine is “poorly visualized” and the others are too old to be used….so my doc is probably going to have me go in for another MRI during that reevaluation process. Lordy. I have a feeling we’re going to be hitting the deductible on our high deductible health care plan for the second year in a row. Anyway, stay tuned to see whether or not I’ll be getting a few titanium rods in my hip followed by several weeks of not bearing any weight on my left leg (which will probably involve me watching a whole lot of Netflix). The good news? We should probably be into the new house before I get scheduled for surgery. The bad news? I’ll only have one good leg to manage the stairs in our three-story house.



Santa brought us some new house goodies this Christmas. One of the things I’m most excited about was a King-sized duvet cover for our bedroom. We have a king-sized duvet (now with a cover), king-sized pillows, king-sized sheets (thank you Black Friday sales on Groupon!)….but we don’t actually have a kind-sized mattress. Whoops! Yeah, we’ll get on that soon enough. Anyway, I was waiting until we picked out paint colors to decide what I liked for bedding, but since we went neutral in the bedroom, I really left myself open for lots of different options. I saw this one on L.L. Bean when I was ordering Christmas gifts for other people. I got a $10 gift card when I made those Christmas purchases, so when I saw the shams on sale after Christmas….I just had to have them! 

Stain Remover{five}

I’ve got some cool Norwex news. I was on a webinar in December for consultants to hear about the new 2015 products. One thing that had been noted was how many people were using the Norwex dishwashing liquid as a laundry stain remover, particularly for grease stains. So, Norwex took the old dishwashing liquid, made some minor modifications, and re-branded the product as their laundry stain remover. Then they came up with a new reformulated dishwashing soap! I hadn’t tried the old dishwashing liquid as a stain remover, but over Christmas my dad happened to get turkey grease on a brand new sweater he had just opened as a gift that morning. He was pretty upset. As we all know, grease stains are the worst, and he was lamenting about how he hadn’t found anything that was completely effective at removing grease stains. So, I told him to give the dishwashing liquid (now stain remover) a try. Yes, I have turned into that crazy Norwex consultant who has products on hand all the time. Lo and behold, it worked. The stain was completely gone. Honestly, even I was a little amazed. Anyway, not long after we got back to Indy, I had to get a grease stain out of one of my new-ish shirts….and Norwex came to my rescue again. So, I am now highly recommending that you keep a bottle of Norwex’s new stain remover on hand in your laundry room. I promise it’s a move you won’t regret. Plus, it’s a pretty large bottle that should last you a long time (unless you’re a super messy eater like me). A bottle is $10.99 and you can order it here.

Until later, Ashlen

  • Any idea on how long the recovery for that kind of surgery would take? I hate to hear that all the other therapies didn’t work. I know a little something about going through tons of therapy with a hope of relief, but I never had to face surgery. Would the surgery be more of a “sure thing,” for pain relief?
    I hate reading about the stairs, too! I was having terrible trouble with stairs when I moved, so I made sure to get a house where all the important stuff is downstairs and upstairs is more for storage/guests.
    The deductible thing sucks, too. I hit mine back in October for the first time ever. The sad thing is that it doesn’t even cover all of the non-covered therapies and other things I need to be comfortable!
    The wet bar looks amazing. At least, if you have to have surgery, you can have a fabulous party to celebrate when you recover!

    • I’ve balked at surgical options for a really long time, but after 9 years I’m ready for it to be fixed by any means possible. From my research so far, it seems like most surgeons restrict weight bearing for about 3 weeks, then gradually allow some weight bearing (like using a walker like a granny!) for another 3 to 4 weeks. Some things I’ve read suggest physical therapy after that point, others seem to suggest that recovery takes a total of 6-8 weeks but that they recommend avoiding strenuous activity for 3 or 4 months. I think some of it will be surgeon preference. It used to be an open surgery using a bone graph, and in recent years it’s transitioned to using titanium implants with a minimally invasive approach, so that’s a really nice improvement! I don’t know if any surgery is a “sure thing” for pain relief, but from what I’ve read in studies and patient forums, it seems to provide relief to a lot of patients with pretty minimal complications as long as you abide by your post-op instructions.

      I so hear you about the insurance deductible. One of my sleep disorder meds is generic but still really expensive, so it eats it up pretty fast. That, combined with the MRIs I got last June meant that we hit our deductible in the middle of the year. That said, once we hit it we made sure to get a lot of other “maintenance” stuff in because we knew it was all going to be covered! Unfortunately the newest med I’ve been put on for my sleep disorder has to be specialty compounded (I actually get it shipped to me from Atlanta), so of course now I’m dealing with trying to get that covered in some capacity. I thought dealing with insurance as a pharmacist was a nightmare, but dealing with it as a patient is definitely not fun either.

      You’re right about the wet bar though….I hadn’t thought about a recovery party, but that’s a brilliant idea! The day I’m pain free is definitely a cause to celebrate!