And Somehow This is Progress.

This man was in my house yesterday.

It’s okay, though. I know him. Intimately.

So, why was Himself doing his best Oompa Loompa in the TV Room impression?

I’m glad you asked! Let me tell you all about.

With luck I will be able to tell you all about it in a way that does not give the entire Internet a migraine.

I decided to start a business.

Which meant I needed a home office.

Only place for a home office in the house was the master bedroom.

Home office got a new computer. A new Mac. Wireless. Yay!

Except that one of the things I seriously need the computer to do is videoconference. This isn’t so great over the wireless connection.

This meant moving the router.

Which left our other computer without any internet at all.

This is the computer the kids use.

For homework.

For playing.

For chatting.

And we took their internet away.

This means that later when the kids are making health care decisions for us? We are so going to die.

Here is some chaos. We were somehow going to make this chaos BETTER by introducing another cable.

Here is a handy, highly-detailed, meticulously scaled blueprint of our house.

I feel like I should explain that my house is not actually colored like a package of Skittles.

There are lots of entertainingly weird things about our house, but that’s blog fodder for many weeks to come. Today I’m going to talk about routing cables.

The kids wanted their internet access back. We wanted to not be fighting with the kids over the laptop and/or kicking them out of our bedroom in the middle of the night.

But note the distance between the new home office location and the kids’ computer. It’s a fair distance. There’s outside between the two. And under NO circumstances was I running a cord through the bedroom, down the hallway, along the kitchen walls and back to the computer in the family room. I am not THAT white trash. I’m not!

The only thing to do was route the cable under the house.

I would like to disclose that we do not, in fact, live in a swamp. Nor do we live in a bog, a marsh or an estuary.

And yet, this is what Himself looked like after running the cable under our home:

But I have a confession to make.

As much as love, adore, worship-the-ground-upon-which-they-walk-admire our kids, we had an ulterior motive.

We live in California. We have AT&T cell plans. This means mostly that our phones are decorative.

And we’d had enough of it.

Both of our phones are now on the 3G network. Which means that micro-cell-towers can support both of them.

And part of this re-routing… just a wee, tiny, eensy, insignificant fraction of it…was to install the signal booster.

So now I have this, in my home:

Look at all those bars.

Aren’t they lovely??


  1. LOVELY bars you’ve got there.

    And you have GOT to have the world’s best husband ever. I know mine would NEVER think to do that. He’d just make me re-do my office scheme.

    1. *sigh* I love my bars.

      Then again, he loves his bars too.

      If it were JUST my bars, he might have been a little reluctant to crawl under the house.

      But for my bars, his bars and the kids not committing us to a home, he commenced with the crawling.

    1. Oh, I didn’t even think about swale! That should be a WOW.

      And I think he maintained a healthy sense of the ridiculousness for crawling under the house in the swale-age.

  2. Hi Katie,

    I write while in four bar envy. I’m an Okie who lives in way west Auckland New Zealand. Where there are hills and trees and Orcs. And usually no bars. Except when the phone is resting on the window ledge in the front room. If there are no clouds. Then we can sometimes actually text, but not talk. And, of course, flashy 3G phones would solve all this. So I borrowed one from the ginormous ex-monopoly to test before buying. Guess what? No bars on 3G. Sigh. And today I have been talking to techs in Philippines because we have internet broadband problems as well. I do miss America. I had many guns to resolve problems. Best of luck with you new office. Props to hisownself for foraging through the mud and critters to run the wire. Impressive.


    1. I hear that Orcs wreak havoc with cell signal.

      Our garage dragons fend the Orcs off, so we are at least free from that particular grief.

      And if I had a way to send a bar to you, I so would.

  3. Very good plan to think of old age when contemplating fighting your children over the internet! I think the digging and dragon fighting was definitely worth it. Our flat is crawling with wires and cable of all sorts that we constantly trip over. Unfortunately, as we’re on the 9th floor there’s no way they’ll go underground!

    1. We think of this a lot when making decisions about the children…”Will this result in us going to Sunny Acres, or Nurse Ratchett’s Sanitarium?”

      Easy way to help decisions get made. ;)

  4. I’m trying to decide if my parent’s would have taken the trouble to run wires under the house for me so that I could have internet….I’m thinking that even with the incentive of the signal booster, they would not.

    I want to see pictures of the dragons…..or at least drawings!

  5. The things we will do for better electronic signals. We recently had to get our cable line rewired from our downstairs to our upstairs, and the poor cable guy..found that the existing wire was knotted 3 tmes. Only it was behind our TV, inside a 2 ton huge entertainment center that is bolted to the floor, and then down this chute between upstairs and downstairs.

    And he was like, 3 feet tall. Luckily, husband is 6’5. He ended up doing most of the work.

    So, did you buy the plastic suit just for this event or do you have those on hand in the closet of doom?

    1. We had a bizarre problem like that! A year into living here, the satellite receiver died. Just…died. Tech came out and realized that half the house had been wired with the wrong gauge to support the received. He said it had only been a matter of time, and was surprised that we got a year out of it. He was rather alarmed that Zippy the Cable Guy (so called because he tracked mud all over my flippin’ house) hadn’t noticed. I replied that I wasn’t sure that Zippy would have recognized that little problem, what with all the missing brain cells and stupid tax I’d levied.

      And we bought the bunny suit special. The closet of doom has no room seeing as how it is full of much less useful crap.

  6. We don’t have a router yet and if I show my husband this post, we’ll never have one. He would never go to that much trouble. I hope yours had shoes to match that outfit. I can’t imagine going under the house in only spiffy white socks…or are those some kinda special sock coverings? Love the drawings. They are so instructional for those of us who are visual learners.

    1. Yes, whatever you do, DON’T SHARE THIS POST WITH THE HUSBAND.

      Although to be fair, I think many happy router stories have concluded without a husband crawling through muck.

      And the shoes…oh dear…the shoes will definitely be featured later.

      It’s tragic.

  7. You married yourself a prince. Look what he did for you…er, wait a minute. I didn’t read down far enough. Oh…. OK, it all makes sense now. I mean… what he did for his cell phone service. We have cables all over the place, and our new super fast wireless is intermittent throughout the day. Life can just be soooo difficult. That was written with pure and unadulterated sarcasm. Just in case you weren’t sure.

    1. I have a pretty good sarcasm meter…it red-lined!

      And yes, a man in pursuit of a cell signal. Simple not a force to be reckoned with.

  8. What a wonderful man you’ve got in himself. That looked like a tough job! Congrats on all your bars! We’re so thrilled that we don’t have to stand on the porch,or hold our heads just right anymore. It is a thrill, I tell ya!

    1. I did stop just short of forcing the entire family to join hands to try and create a human antenna.

      We should all be proud of me!

  9. Thank you Himself! Would you like a nice buttermilk raspberry cake now? Perhaps some chocolate and raspberry sauce drizzled onto the plate, and a tiny scoop of organic vanilla ice cream on the top of it, that you do NOT have to share with anyone/anything??

  10. Looks like you are being invaded by an extra from the movie “outbreak”.

    Congrats on the home office; love the iphone, have ditched pretty much everything else.

    Have you thought about colouring your actual rooms that way? Could be cool. Just saying…

  11. In case anyone is wondering… the randomly placed closet in the master bedroom serves as the wall where the motion-sensor operated machine gun is mounted. There are two others located randomly throughout the house, meant for surprise and thrills to home invaders.

    I don’t know you, but I felt you should have included this information on your Skittles home blueprint for general disclaimers, should the home invaders sue you after getting their bums shot off. Just watching your back.. all those free personal injury lawyers hate me… I have severely impacted their client base.

    I watch maybe a little too much Criminal Minds reruns…

    1. I never think these things far enough ahead!

      I ALWAYS stop at the weaponry turrets and NEVER think about the disclaimers to keep my arse from getting sued.

      You, madam, are a beneficial ally.

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