Wednesday, July 19, 2006

It's curtains for me.

The living room is clear, except for the end tables that will eventually be taking up residence in the basement. We hooked up the electronics and watched Galaxy Quest a few days ago while we did this. Now we've got the library to put together (i.e. get all the textbooks out of their boxes and onto shelves, probably get more shelves, rescue Eric's other books from storage, and--according to his wish--alphabetize books within genre) and the dining room to finish off (a couple of boxes of knickknacks). And locks and the leaky faucets in the basement to replace. But otherwise: we're basically done!

Except that the windows are uncovered. That's not true, exactly; two of them, now, are hung with curtains. There are six. See, I had bought this lovely linen/cotton material at $2.77 a yard (making it about $6 a window, rather than the $40 it would have cost by buying from, say, Target) and promised to make curtains. After all, how hard could they be? And indeed they're not hard; all I have to do is cut the appropriate length and trim an inch off the selvedge (because it's slightly discolored at the edges, which is why it was $2.77 a yard) and cut that piece in half and seam up three sides (with nice mitred corners) and sew a big loop on the end. And indeed it's not hard, but I just didn't want to do it. But the windows get very big and black at night and it's not very pleasant to sit and watch a movie, or sit and read, in the living room with those windows staring. So last night I finally got motivated and finished the second pair and cut lengths for the other four pairs. I will do my best to complete at least one curtain a night until they're finished. Then I get to work on the front door, the back door, the stairway window, and the bathroom window, but only once I find the right fabric at the right price. I'm figuring that at this rate, my sewing machine is paying for itself even if I didn't use it for enjoyment with quilting.

We've also been looking for a premarital counselor. This is something we'd discussed before--because our history is, well, odd, and we've both got some concerns because of it, we wanted to talk to someone. But Eric priced it a few days ago and it's going to be about $120 an hour, several sessions at least, and insurance won't cover it. As Eric said, that's a lot of dishes to throw at each other we could simply buy instead. I suggested a workshop or a class, which I've heard of as cheaper (though less individualized), and focusing more on skills for problem-solving, communication, etc. Eric liked that idea, and so I've been looking around--but can't find anything that isn't religious. I think this is interesting, particularly considering that several states are currently proposing making covenant marriages, which would require premarital counseling, a legal option. I wrote to the Ohio Department of Mental Health and asked if they had any suggestions on nonreligious premarital education. The very nice guy who responded suggested that I try the county mental health board. He added something about, "If there is any question of who you should speak to, ask for the Client's Rights Officer. They tend to be good at problem-solving." I get the feeling that this is not a question they're prepared to answer. I did more poking around and found that Ohio State University apparently offers classes, and also a newsletter. It's mostly one-page briefs on listening, communication, being willing to face conflict, knowing your partner, and so on. Reading through it I'm feeling that the education bit isn't going to be so much a problem as the concerns-about-our-history bit. Eric has said that perhaps we don't need a counselor if we keep talking about it between ourselves. I think this makes sense, but now I'm feeling disappointed that there aren't the resources to talk to someone about this--something that might, you know, prevent a divorce, if that were an option with us--without paying someone several hundred dollars.

Also I have just discovered that my bank and my check company are having a tiff and I'm caught in the middle, so I need to call people to yell at them. One thing about this job, it's certainly making me braver about calling people.

1 comment:

JLB said...

You can't go wrong by continually working with each other on communication. It takes persistence!

I hope that you find what you're looking for... I like your idea of finding local classes. Perhaps you could keep your eye on the community newspaper?

Happy curtain making!