Flash Fiction

Flash Fiction: A Better Choice


Fiction under 250 words.


She sneezed as the box slipped out of her grasp and fell to the floor with a loud thump. Fingers of thick dust squeezed past the bottom and swirled around her face.

Isabel dug into the back pocket of her jeans and produced a tissue. She was wiping her nose when she saw it, her old high school yearbook.

She crouched on her haunches and picked up the book. The plastic had a yellow tinge and the spine creaked loudly when she opened it.

She spent several minutes slowly flipping through the pages. Images flickered past her mind’s eye like an old black and white film, colorless yet somehow vivid. Easing onto her bottom she sat on the attic floor, a specific face catching her attention and causing her to catch her breath.

Mike Stover.

He had been a tight end on the football team. Tall, beefy and with eyes so vibrant blue she remembered feeling immobilized and tingly when he looked at her, as if a streak of lightening had struck the top of head and zigzagged through to her feet.

They had been lovers. They had planned a future together. Everyone said they were perfect for each other.

But then she had met Troy, her husband, and her feelings for Mike had changed, Mike had seemed safe, even boring, next to Troy.

She had grown restless.

“Hey Red? Are you still breathing up there? Do I need to perform CPR?”

She smiled. She had made the right decision.


(This short-short was inspired by Robert Frost’s poem The Road Not Taken.)

Kitchen Saga

Kitchen Saga: Slowly Getting Back to Normal

You wouldn’t think that simply BEING at home and coordinating contractors would be so stressful …

…but I’m here to tell you, it IS. I’m a little disappointed in myself, if you want the truth. This whole kitchen remodel has stressed me out so much that I’ve literally been crashing on the couch at 8:00 p.m. and I only rouse myself long enough to make sure the boys are going to bed and I’ve brushed my teeth.

This remodeling stuff is for the birds. I can’t imagine building a whole house!

On second thought, maybe it’s easier when you build a house: you get to leave and come back to see results. When you remodel, you have to live (i.e. shuffle things around and step over obstacles) among the mess and see every single thing that happens every single moment that it happens. When you remodel, you get to hear the contractors curse under their breath when something doesn’t quite work out like it’s supposed to and then moments later they clear their throat and call you into the room to show you and ask for an alternate plan.

And that’s is the part that I hate the most – the questions. Kevin has to go to work, so I’m here, alone, with the contractors and their blasted questions. I feel like such a helpless female whenever they ask me questions I don’t have answers to.

“Hang on,” I say, “let me call my husband.”

I feel like such a Victorian when that happens.

“Help me! I’m a weak female who can’t think for herself!”


So to over compensate, I run every possible scenario past Kevin before he leaves for work. I know he’s gotten a bit impatient with me these past weeks, but seriously, it’s no fun to feel like an idiot. (You’d think I’d be USED to that feeling by now).

Anyway, all this to say …. I was simply too stressed, distracted and tired to write anything about yesterday.

AND to say …


Aren’t you glad?! I’m sure you’re sick of hearing about it, I’m certainly sick of writing about it.

The cabinet guy came over early Saturday and finished the job. After many adjustments and tweaks, he finally finished. It only took him three days (?), but I have to say, we couldn’t be MORE pleased with the results.

Remember the crooked floor issue? Well, he manipulated the cabinets so that they lined up with the grout line and anyone walking into the room would never know our kitchen is built like a fun house room. Everything looks fantastic.

I’ll take you on a tour:

This is the view looking in from the dining room:

New Cabinets

And a closer look:

New Cabinets

Our cute little glass doors on either side of the sink:

New Cabinets

The cabinet where our sink will go – looks pretty normal and blah, right?

New Cabinets

Ah, but wait! It actually opens up into a wedge drawer! This is where we’ll keep our sponges and anything else we usually have lying around the sink.

New Cabinets

We opted not to put knobs on this because even though it’s a cool little compartment, we didn’t want to draw attention to the fact that it’s a cool little compartment, you know? (Huh?)

Karen, what is that overly large drawer for?

New Cabinets

Ah, I’m glad you asked. It’s where our …

New Cabinets

… trash goes!! Yay! No more unsightly trash can out in the middle of the floor for visitors to see and smell! (Well, see. I’m sure our trash will STILL stink after this. *ba-da-bum*)

Seriously, I keep opening this drawer up to admire our dual trash bins. And I haven’t allowed anyone to use it yet because HEY, the newness needs to wear off first, thank you very much. (Kevin just rolls his eyes at me).

Here are the cabinets on the range side:

New Cabinets

There aren’t any fun little drawer gadgets on this side – it’s pretty straight forward.

This is what you see when you enter the kitchen via the family room:

New Cabinets

Note the AWESOME bookcase!!


See those yummy columns? Would you believe those columns were the most expensive “extra” thing we ordered? (Yes, even more expensive than the glass doors). Talk about insane. BUT, we will never do this again and you know? If it’s what you want, it’s what you want. We don’t want to look back on this project in our old age and say, “You know, we should have just splurged and bought the dang columns.”

Now? No regrets. 🙂

I can’t wait to put my NEW cookbooks on there. (And yes, I will have to buy some decent cookbooks because mine are seriously nasty, stained and literally coming apart).

Here’s a shot of the kitchen from the other side of the room:

New Cabinets

See that big door in the lower right-hand corner? That’s where our kitchen computer goes.

New Cabinets

Because YES FOLKS. We are such uber geeks that we planned a space specifically for our kitchen computer. (And Kevin has already set it up using an unused shelf to put his monitor on).

I think our cabinet guy was amused with our computer space.

And there you have it. Our new, customized kitchen and I couldn’t love it more. I mean, I truly, TRULY love it. I walk in our new kitchen and simply stop to admire.

“I can’t believe this is my kitchen.”

I am proud of it. I am no longer ashamed of it. We’ve talked about doing this project for 18 long years and now, it’s finally happened.

Please allow me this moment to appreciate it.

We went to Lowe’s on Sunday to buy some paper to line our drawers. I don’t want the moisture from our dishes to warp our wood. In the past, I’ve just haphazardedly thrown some paper in there and it’s looked like crap. Kevin actually got his leveler tool out and cut the paper into exact measurements (please allow our anal-ness).

We went over to Kevin’s parents’ house Sunday to pick up the washer and dryer. They were Nanny’s (Kevin’s grandmother’s) and quite new. (Nanny passed away last summer). I had painted the portion of the wall where the washer and dryer were going to go and with the help of Dude, the guys got them back into place so I was able to catch up on laundry.

In the meantime, the Boys / Girls Club came by and picked up our old washer and dryer and range. Kevin had cleaned them up and they all still worked, so they were thrilled to have them.

The plumber and the appliance guys came out yesterday. The plumber ran a line to the back of our fridge so we could use the ice machine / water spigot on the front of the fridge. The appliance guys finished installing the appliances about 4:00 p.m.

I felt actual physical pain when I heard them drilling into our brand new cabinets in order to secure the dishwasher.

New Cabinets w/ Appliances

They had to take the front door off in order to get the fridge into the house. It wouldn’t fit through the garage entrance. It didn’t dawn on us, until Sunday night, that our fridge MIGHT be a bit too big to go into the space allotted.

So, we hurriedly went out and measured – we had 1/2 an inch clearance! HA! I don’t know why it never dawned on either of us to make sure our fridge was going to fit before we bought it. We were excited I guess.

But it all worked out and everything is now in place. We can’t use the dishwasher yet, of course, until we reinstall the sink, but everything else is functional.

New Cabinets w/ Appliances

We’re going to hold off putting our old counter tops back in place and reinstalling our old sink until after the counter top guys come out and measure for the template. They haven’t called us yet (we’re following up on that today), but after they do their thing, we’ll be able to get our kitchen back into semi-normal. We don’t expect the counter tops to arrive for at least a month (Lowe’s warned us that they take the longest).

I transferred everything from the old fridge to the new fridge last night so now we don’t have to make a trip out to the garage to get our milk.

We were too tired to cook at home last night, but tonight, I plan on cooking breakfast. I can’t wait to use the new range. (Though I need to read the manual because it’s a lot more fancy than our other one was).

And that brings you guys up-to-date. Thanks for indulging me while I rattle on about our remodel. I wanted to make sure I documented the whole long process and though we’re not through yet, the bulk of the work, and inconvenience, is over.

Everything looks great and we couldn’t be happier. Now we get to “tweak” it and make it look pretty.

I think I’m looking forward to that part the most. 🙂