This dog is real. Your baby is hypothetical and, I think, a mistake.

I have spent approximately 12 million dollars in the last seven days. What do I have to show for it? Pretty much nothing fun.

– Old, leaky house. See below.

– Hazelnut colored honeycomb shades (they aren’t called blinds, they are shades!). How many colors of white exist in the world of blinds? An f’in bazillion.
A sampling?  Linen, Hazelnut, Soapstone, Parchment, Shell, Putty, Snowflake, Blush and Stucco. They all look the same to me and, as I am too impatient to order a sample to ensure I like the color, I just winged it and ordered custom blinds sight unseen? Stupid, you ask? Undoubtedly. I did, however, get three “free” pillows from their partner company with my $60 in gift certificates so there.

– New TV. Again, how many TVs exist? I won’t even joke about the number because it’s insane. So I picked one out and ordered it from Amazon. Then I had it delivered to our old address because that is how I roll. Seems like it works fine. We are too cheap for cable and I don’t even know how to turn the lights off in our house so I am not going to get involved in fine tuning the HDMIHAGGSJKEG settings. It’s a TV, it plays that stupid show the Backyardigans and Nemo over and over and over again if I push one button. Done.

– An energy assessment. I found a rebate underwritten by DOE for up to 1750 if you have your house insulation upgraded. So I am doing it. Now it looks like we live in the ET house while the depressurize the the place (I just made that up). My head might also explode. Then they will give me an estimate for the cost of sealing and insulating the house and my head will explode again.

– Rugs. We now reside in a 100+ year old house that, according to the dude doing the work above, and my body that is constantly shivering, leaks a lot of heat. So we bought some rugs. But since we are poor, we went to this crazy Polish remnant place not too far from our house and scored two 12X10 rugs for a pretty good deal. Well, it would be a good deal if I didn’t buy everything listed above.

– Blinds repair. Apparently it costs a lot of money to restring blinds. And extra to have them taken down for you. This means that Mr. Swirley and I are going to attempt to take them down ourselves which will likely lead to broken blinds and more expenses.

– General stupid purchases like biodegradable leaf bags, Serbian coffee, new lampshades, locks, mail slots, food.

So if you are expecting a  Christmas gift from us, my present to you will be the end of my incessant complaining about our condo and the beginning of the same level or more aggravation with regard to our house. And maybe some burnt peanut brittle. Is burnt even a word? Whatever.

Wise words? Bring it.