Punks Kid Rock is the registered name of my American Quarter horse gelding, Rocky. This blog chronicles our adventures together,
as well as stories from my horse past and, occasionally, a tidbit from my non horse life.

Thursday, February 24, 2011


Sunday afternoon

I was searching Craigslist, once again hoping to find a listing for a house that would suit us. I found three, and promptly sent inquiries about going to see the house for rent. The first two sent back eerily similar replies, although from two different addresses and names. The first reply was about a woman who had purchased a house where I live but had moved to Nigeria to be a part of some Christian organization. She wanted to "stand in our trust" and to know that "we would take care of her house as though it were our own," so that "she would be pleased to see it when visiting." She continued on to say that if we were serious about wanting to rent her house, to send a long list of information. She would then pray to the Almighty Father (whom she never makes a decision without consulting) and speak to her family about it. Then she would see about getting papers and keys. The entire email screamed scam, so I forwarded it to Justin for a little laugh and deleted it.

The second reply, as I said, was much like the first, except this time the woman was not in Nigeria. She had moved a few hours away and not to join a Christian organization, but otherwise the wording was much the same. Yet another scam.

The third was from a housing company that I had wanted to rent from previously due to their wonderfully accessible website, but they didn't have anything at the time that would work for us. Now, they had a home that I was rather excited about. This email requested that I call for more information, and I did. They had just listed this home and the man, "Scott," had not yet seen it and needed to check a few things before showing it. He said they would allow us to have our two cats, and to get a dog! He said he wanted to look at it on Monday, and asked me to call him Tuesday morning to set up a showing. I happily agreed, and began filling out their online application.

Monday morning

I stopped in to the housing office to drop off our rent application fees. The young man at the front desk, "Jan," (pronounced 'yawn;' he really did have a unique name like this so I kept it close to the original) asked if we had seen the property yet. I had to say no, and he told me they didn't take application fees until after the person had seen the place. Reasonable. He said he could hold on to it for me so that they could start processing as soon as we had seen and okayed the place.

I spent the rest of the day anxiously anticipating tomorrow.

Tuesday morning

Scott calls me and sets up a 5pm appointment for this same day. I text Justin and make sure my awesome boss is okay with me leaving for an hour or two to check out a house. She says yes.

Tuesday, 5 pm

Ok, so we got there 20 minutes early. I was just a little excited. On the way to the house, we cross a State Trail that goes for miles only two blocks from the house. A perfect place to walk a dog, no? We also took the time to walk down the street a little, where there is a marina on the Bay. We have lake access! We glance around at the neighboring houses, a quiet community with well maintained homes, a community garden and fenced in backyards. We check out the house's backyard, boasting a chain link fence and a garden shed. There is also a nice bench beneath what I'm hoping is a large lilac bush.

The Realtor arrives to find us standing in the porch, where the front door had been left open. The porch has a large bank of windows facing the Bay and providing a sort of mud room before you get to the 'real' front door. We enter the house and it's lovely. A great kitchen, complete with modern appliances (no more setting the oven at 15 degrees below the desired temperature and then cooking food for 10-15 minutes less than you're supposed to, only to have it burnt!) and a dishwasher! There is even COUNTER SPACE, both next to the stove and out far enough from the cupboards so that my Kitchenaid mixer will fit on them! The cupboards are bright white, and the walls are deep pink. There is a dining room connected to a living room, so it feels like one big space. Then there is a back door with space to one side for shoes and coats. I discover what looks like an innocuous older-type door (one of the handles is white porcelain) that leads to both another door outside and the basement.

The basement reminds me just a little of Silence of the Lambs, when Starling goes into Buffalo Bill's basement. Without the moths and the psychopath (or the well), but still. A narrowish hallway with orange and brown 70's wallpaper. There is, however, a door leading to the single stall tuck under garage, a storage room, a washer and dryer, and an odd bathroom. There's a toilet sitting next to the dryer, and an old shower with white cracking tiles. I worry for a moment that this is THE bathroom, but then remember from the online photos that there is another bathroom upstairs. With relief, we go up.

The master bedroom has hardwood floors and space. They have a queen size bed in it and there is still comfortable room around it for dressers and walking. It has two closets, one normal closet size and the other a deep walk in. My hoards of clothes would have a place to live, and Justin's would, too!

The second bedroom is only a bit smaller than the master, with it's own walk-in closet. It also has hardwood floors and would be a perfect Man Cave for Justin.

The real bathroom has a deep, soaking tub with a shower as well. The ceiling curves down so that the shower curtain has to be pulled up the curved curtain rod, but it is designed in a way that works. The shower head is at the tallest part, so if you're standing you may do so comfortably. On the other side of the shower wall is installed shelving for towels. Of course there's the usual toilet and sink, with a cupboard under the sink and one of those mirrors that stores stuff behind it.

We tell Scott that we love the house and would like to move forward with the application process. He tells us that it may be a few days before we hear back if we were approved or not, and asks if we have any criminal history or unpaid bills. We say no and leave with high hopes.

Wednesday, 12:02 pm

I get a call from Jan, and he says that we are approved. I try not to freak out while on the phone with him, and schedule a time to sign the lease. I hang up, allow myself to freak out with excitement, and then call Justin. He's excited but has a conference call to get ready for and therefore must hang up.

I just had to spread the news.

We move in less than a week! :D

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

10 Things

Last night, I was watching OWN with my mom (yeah, that's Oprah Winfrey Network) and there was a show about people who are pretty much hoarders of stuff. As in, PILES of crap EVERYWHERE in their house, and it made me want to declutter my house. Again and more thoroughly than ever before! My mom was describing the show, and how they make the people who own the house take everything out and sort it, but they have a limited time in which to do so. One thing they made a lady do was choose 10 pairs of shoes and get rid of the rest.

At hearing this, my eyes widened and I began to think of my two wonderful hanging shoe racks. Plus the shoes littering the floor beneath my shoe racks that don't fit in them due to their size. I wondered, how would I narrow down my shoes to just 10?

1. My Ariat cowboy boots. LOVE these and they're necessary for horseback riding. I searched for a while to find a pair of Ariat boots in a color other than regular black or brown. These have a red-brown hue, warm. Additionally, the first time I slid my feet into them I remember going, "Oh My God, these are amazing!" - SO MUCH BETTER than the last pair I'd gotten and worn holes through from Wal-Mart.

2. My Ariat winter riding boots. I just got them and they are GREAT- my feet stay warm, I have some traction and I can still ride with a safe boot.

3. My Mukluks. Super warm, comfortable winter boots. Better than any other winter boot I've owned previously.

4. My red Converses that I designed myself. They're still in good shape, I designed what they look like myself, and are personalized with PunksKidRock. The soles are white rubber with a red stripe, the entire outside is red and the tongue has a white background with gray, black and red barbed wire print. The inside of the shoes have the same barbed wire print as the tongue, and I chose red laces. I love these shoes and get compliments on them almost every time I wear them, plus it's fun to tell people I designed them.

5. My red peep toe heels. Justin got them for me when I was feeling really down, and they are gorgeous shoes. They have cut outs and I think they make my feet look pretty. Plus, they're more comfortable to walk in than most heels.

6. The black slouchy suede boots. I got these at Macy's and they were originally $100, but they were the last pair in the store. They fit me, including my calves (!) and were 50% off. Plus, I had a $25 gift certificate so I ended up paying $27. They're sexy and comfortable.

7. Purple suede, ruffled pointy toe flats. They sound and look like heels without being heels. I got them in Chicago when I went to Oprah with my mom, sister, and cousin, also at Macy's. I paid full price for them, but at $70 they were worth it. I feel special in these shoes.

8. Gold flats- my "sun" shoes. These were also purchased in the same Macy's on that same trip to Chicago, but they were in the clearance section. They have a small platform that gives me a little extra height without being heels, and have a round gold beaded disc on the front. Otherwise they're basically fancy flip flops, but that's just it: they're fancy and summery. They go with a LOT of outfits and look better than $5 flippies.

9. Deep red ankle boots. I can wear them with pants over them without having to have unnecessary boot length nearly reaching my knees. They have kitten heels and a pointy toe, effectively lengthening my leg line (thanks Stacy and Clinton) without making me totter around in "real" heels. Plus they're just snappy.

10. The last pair. The black pumas with the gold stripe. This adds a second sneaker to the collection, warmer than my Converses because they're leather. I got these at a Puma outlet store with Justin and I think they were half off.

So that's it. The 10 pairs of shoes I would save above the rest. I realize when I look over this list that 4 of them are in the red family, but I think I have enough variety in styles that I'd be able to dress for nearly any occasion. Maybe I SHOULD downsize...

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Champagne Taste on a Beer Budget

Well then, it's been quite a while since I've last written- since last October, according to my blogger time keeping thing. I'd best get to updates!

Wedding Stuff
Well, we were going to go with a young man named Max Caven to do our photography, until a friend of mine said that he often misses appointments. For example, he was supposed to show up at 7am and instead arrived at someone's house at midnight. The control freak in me does not want someone to photograph my wedding that may or may not show up on time, if at all. I have a small nervous breakdown just thinking about it. So, we are going with Michelle Sternberg, whose photos are lovely and prices are reasonable. I keep forgetting to call her and discuss which photography package we want, mostly because I don't know how long I want/need her for, and don't want to be off in either direction. Have her leave too soon, and she could miss an important moment. If she's there too long, we pay her to sit and/or dance around with all of the guests. Bah. I don't know what time we are starting the ceremony, either.
On a more clear cut note, we got our wedding bands! Hurrah for Valentine's Day sales!

Rocky Stuff
Oh boy did I spend money yesterday. I got Rocky a GORGEOUS new saddle that was everything I had wanted in a new saddle. It's a brand new Circle Y trail saddle, originally intended for gaited horses but for some reason fits Rocky perfectly. Apparently for a Quarter Horse, he has a back like a Tennessee Walker. (Although, I did hear that Circle Y was wishing they hadn't named this series of saddles the Trail Gaiter, just because people would assume they are for gaited horses only.) At any rate, it has an amazing cinch system that is rather challenging to describe.
There, a picture! Except mine is the rich brown Walnut shade, not Regular Oil as pictured here. Anyway, the cinch. You start to tighten the girth normally, but then you put the strap through the second little C ring (yup, I don't know what it's called and their website didn't seem to name it) that hangs down beneath the cantle. So it tightens in a triangle shape that helps keep the saddle on from two different directions.
Then, because this saddle is shaped uniquely- and by that, I mean it has a tiny skirt in back- I got the saddle pad that goes with it, in brown felt with Walnut leather trim. And since I was already ordering the saddle pad online and a girl has got to have matching equipment... I got the matching breast collar, too. I resisted getting the bridle as well for a few reasons. One, I really like the headstall and reins I have right now because they have clips to make changing bits easy. Two, because the matching headstall didn't have aforementioned clips, and three, I didn't want to spend yet more money when I am happy with what I have.

I got Rocky his hackamore when I got his saddle. I now ride without a bit in Rocky's mouth, and it's amazing how much better he is with it. He was leaning on the soft snaffle bit I'd outfitted him with earlier, and it took a while to convince him to curve into turns rather than resist them. Additionally, he became scared while trail riding and bolted with me. The snaffle bit did nothing to stop his headlong rush back to the barn, whereas the new hackamore has enough "bite" to it to stop such a charge. It's still a light enough bit to cue gently, but will back me up if needed. It is a favored bit for barrel racers due to it's ability to encourage great turns and quick stops without being overly harsh. We may try barrel racing one day, but for now, it'll be nice to know I've got Whoa! when I need it.

Other Stuff
My job is going well! I got a lovely raise and sincerely enjoy work on most days. My boss is amazing and the girls I work with can be incredibly rewarding. I also joined a book club, and our second meeting is coming up soon. For the first month, we read Alice in Wonderland, and now we're reading Alice I Have Been, in order to compare the two. I very much enjoy the person who invited me. She boards her horse where I have Rocky so we've gone riding together as well, and she is a kind, intelligent and funny person. A harder combination to find than one might think.

We are trying to find a new place to live before our current lease is up on April 15. We could renew said lease, but I desperately want a puppy and a real bedroom that is not in a basement, both of which are not possible where we live. I just found a place today that I emailed about that could be great, and I am praying it will work out. It is within walking distance of a beach, has 3 bedrooms and says cats and dogs are okay. Plus, it's within our price range, so it is attainable if someone else doesn't snatch it up first.
Simultaneously, we are considering trying to buy our own house, but are uncertain of whether or not the bank would give us such a loan. We have a good chunk of money going out in various loans that we already have, and they probably take up too large of a percentage of our income for the bank to feel comfortable granting us such a sizable amount of money.

I think I want a German Shepherd.