Friday, May 31, 2019

This morning I dealt with the remaining paper stack, filing things but mostly paying some bills.  The credit card had a WALLOPING bottom line this month.  

Not only were there all the usual monthly payments, but this statement also included annual house insurance, car and truck insurance, some recent hefty car repairs, as well as my plane tickets and rental car.

I realized on Tuesday (when I drove to the gym) that the only place I'm going to need my right shoe is in the car.  I've left it there, so it was waiting for me when I headed out this morning.  Good thing, because I'd forgotten I'd need to take off my boot to drive until I got in the car. 

Speaking of my boot - when I had gotten home from the gym on Tuesday and went to put the boot back on, the little foam piece insert that keeps the top from digging into my shin was MIA.  Since it wasn't in the car, and last place I'd had it was in the gym, I surmised that it must have landed in the parking lot when I was taking off the boot to drive home.  So this morning I looked around that area of the lot when I got to the gym, but didn't see it.  Oh well I thought.  I can find another piece of foam, right?  But when I came back out after my session, I just happened to notice it on the rocks in the 'aisle' where the wind must have blown it.

Nothing else on today, so hope to do some sewing after lunch.

Or maybe a nap?  Been up since 3:30.

Mitch came by yesterday, and finished up removing the three unused spigots around the property.  That will make mowing much easier, plus require that much less work with the weed-eater.  He also took care of a few small things around the house for me.  Of course there's still plenty left to do on the list I gave him.  

Today he might start on the stucco repair at the back house.  If he gets that done (and then the painting) it would be a nice surprise for Alex when he returns home next week.  He's been in Ohio this week, and posted some tornado damage pix on Instagram.  (Last week he was in Iowa, when their tornadoes made the news.)  Scary! 

Last night I watched the national spelling bee.  

I missed the very beginning (when the words may have been "easier"?... LOL) so there were only a handful of words I even recognized (meerschaum, Komondor, bougainvillea) let alone would be able to spell.  To say the kids were impressive is putting it mildly - the last 8 spellers just could not miss! 

Whittled down more of the piles of paperwork yesterday, and today I hope to plow through the remainder.  Nothing 'on' except the gym, so it could actually happen, right?

Thursday, May 30, 2019

No jury duty for Marcie, so it' a GO for our Sew Day on Monday.

While I was waiting for the Riderwood shuttle bus earlier this month, I passed the time reading one of the free "newspapers", and was intrigued by an article Tech Startups Want To Check Your Memory.  

 Arizona based MindCrowd needs one million people to help test their tool.  MindCrowd, formed in 2013, hopes to determine the risk factor for Alzheimer's disease.

So today I logged on and took the test, a short-term memory exercise. 

I was shown 12 pairs of words, one pair at a time.  Afterwards I was shown (again one at a time) the first word of each pair and asked to type in the second word.  It was hard!  

The exercise was repeated (with the same pairs) two more times.  Each time concentrated on the ones I knew I had missed - so it was frustrating that I still seemed unable to remember most of them.

My score was 75%  

Given the following numbers maybe I didn't do as poorly as I thought?

For my age group the average score was 32%
For my education level the average score was 45%
Women averaged 44% (men were about the same)
Left-handed people averaged 54%
I've been watching a lot of TV (hey, doctor's orders, right?) and not feeling guilty.  Last night on PBS I caught a NOVA program advertised as "Gravity".  That sounded interesting, and I figured I'd likely <g> learn something.

I was surprised that it turned out 'really' to be about Einstein's theory of special relativity... but even more surprised that thanks to the clear explanations (starting with the example of lightning at the railway station) I finally understand the basics of it!  Couldn't find a clip of the video, but here's a simple photo.

I was a little fuzzier about the concept of curved spacetime, but possibly because I was getting sleepy half-way through the hour... at only 8:30!

It certainly did not help that I dozed through the final 15 minutes.
Went to bed at 9:00!

Marcie didn't have to show up for Jury Duty first thing this morning, though she still has to call in at 10:15 to see if she needs to appear for the afternoon session.  If not, we should be a GO for our Sew Day on Monday, when I may start on a wedding quilt for Elena.  (This is why so most of the quilts on my List never manage to float to the top....people keep getting married, having birthdays or babies, etc.)  This morning someone on one of my quilt sites posted a top of a new twist on the traditional Wedding Ring pattern, which I really liked.  I immediately ordered (and have already printed!) the pattern.


Wednesday, May 29, 2019

My UFO scrap quilt is finally finished after all these years

It's bound (and even sporting its label),
completed just in time <g> for the hot weather.  

I am SO pleased with the finished product!

Next time somebody is over to hold it up I'll take its portrait and post it.

Wish I could get this guy to do it!

Speaking of quilts... is anyone surprised that I 'managed' to find some fabric to bring home from Busy Bees this morning?  If you are, then it's obvious...

Most of the fabric (one panel missing) that followed me home:

When Marcie and I got back from "shopping", 
we watched the PBS Nature episode on birds' eggs. 

The Egg: Life’s Perfect Invention

The egg is perhaps nature’s most perfect life support system. These remarkable structures nurture new life, protecting it from the outside world at the same time as allowing it to breathe. They are strong enough to withstand the full weight of an incubating parent and weak enough for a hatchling to break free. But how is an egg made? Why are they the shape they are? And perhaps most importantly, why lay an egg at all? Piece by piece from creation to hatching, host David Attenborough reveals the wonder behind these incredible miracles of nature.
Marcie was glad I'd saved it for her.  And even though it was the third viewing for me I still thoroughly enjoyed watching it.

Something out front really captured Brownie's attention.  He was definitely on alert, though I couldn't see anything.  Even sitting in my chair with a clear view outside, I still saw nothing when he barked a few minutes ago.

.  Though he spends a lot of time hanging out in that spot 'surveying his acres', for the first time he'd gotten up on his back paws (for a better look?)  Unfortunately by the time I'd retrieved the camera that was no longer his stance.  

No doubt once the summer weather hits (and we're having to keep the door closed) he will miss that.  But he can always sunbathe out back.

It wasn't hard to predict that I'd be a little sore today after yesterday morning's upper-body session at the gym.  Even before I 'took a month off' I was having difficulty with several of the new machines, even at their lowest possible weight.

Got a nice tune-up at the chiropractor yesterday afternoon.  He was also surprised that things weren't off more than they were, what with me standing and walking "funny" this past month.  

Got in more work on the binding yesterday, though didn't quite finish before I was done for the day.  Should be easy enough to finish today, a definite goal since temps are heating back up again and those pesky triple digits are looming in the forecast.

Marcie is chauffeuring me to Busy Bees today where we expect to find all sorts of goodies in the tubs Monica will be bringing.  

We fully plan to help out Monica by adopting some fabric
as she does not want to have to take it home with her again!

And it goes without saying <g> that we will be helping Busy Bees 
by plumping up their coffers with our purchases!


Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Tom phoned yesterday to let me know that he is now at Carlo's in Idaho.  Sadly he had a less-than-productive rock-collecting trip in Oregon this year.  Between the cold and rainy crappy weather (which never cleared) and the fact that all the 'good stuff' is gone, he only ended up with half a bucket of material to bring home.  And unfortunately the weather in Idaho isn't any better, so no idea what the guys will do instead of fishing!

Marcie dropped off my quilt yesterday morning on her way to run errands (she'd attached the binding for me, so it's perfect) and throughout the day I made substantial progress on the blind hand-stitching.  With the quilt draped over my lap while I sew I definitely appreciate the unseasonably cool weather we're having now.

When I checked on the peaches yesterday, some of them had ripened... but of course the birds had already helped themselves to those.  I harvested the rest of the crop (at least the ones I could reach) and they are currently having to finish up ripening inside on the kitchen counter.  

When Marcie visited in the afternoon she brought me some very tasty "used" cornbread (she'd baked in cheese and chilis) from their dinner the night before. She also delivered a couple of items; she'd asked if I needed anything at the grocery store, and we were low on sugar, needed for feeding the hummingbirds.  (Most of the other stuff could wait.) 

At that point I hadn't yet gotten the last RSVP from our new quilting "group", but once it came in later I was able to send out this e-mail:

Okay, ladies, all RSVPs are now in.  We’re going to try for June 3rd, though we may have to shuffle it to June 17th; Marcie finds out later this week whether her group has to show up for Jury Duty the next day. IF that happens, and then IF she gets picked for a trial that runs several days, we’ll move it forward 2 weeks (though unfortunately Wanda would not be able to make it that day.)  Start thinking about what project you’re going to work on!  

And in the quilting e-mail department, 
this morning I found this from Monica in my in-box:

Hi all! —-My friend Cynthia Booker (sister quilter) lost her life to cancer recently
Her husband Steve brought ALL of her fabric over this morning 
He said it was 3 or 4 bins —-Well it turned out to be about 10 FULL of fabric
My car is FULL and I will bring it on Wed to the Bees - We can make donation for the Bees
Steve also has a cutting table, a sewing table, 4 sewing machines 
and he does not want to sell but wants to find someone who needs this stuff
I really need to find a new home for this stuff

When pool guy Aaron came by in the afternoon 
he took care of spider removal for me.  

Even though the cup was out of the way, Murphy's Law is usually lurking nearby, so I did worry that "for some reason" Brownie might go under that small table and knock over the cup.  If the spider had escaped, of course I would have needed to move out of the house until it was located and dispatched.

Speaking of Brownie, yesterday I gave him his chewable meds, the monthly Interceptor Plus (heartworm) and his every-3-months Brevecto (flea and tick.)  While he happily chowed down on the first one, I truly lost count of how many times he spit out the second one.

He was definitely off his feed yesterday; in the afternoon when Latina visited there was still a bit of food left in his dish from the previous afternoon's feeding.  (I never gave him more food yesterday morning.)  And he either threw up a bit or had a little diarrhea at one point in the day (because he chowed down on something dead in the yard?) leaving me a tiny puddle (helpfully not on the carpet) of something smelly to clean up.  However he was perky all day, and when the  alarm went off at 3:00 he was decidedly happy to polish off his dinner.

For my dinner I cooked up the salmon fajita burger I'd gotten at Winco the other day.  It was quite tasty, and since I ate it naked (I had no bun) it wasn't quite as filling so I was sorry that I hadn't gotten two.  Next time!

Naturally I've gotten much better at putting on my boot, but yesterday discovered something "new".  (If Ryan mentioned it on Thursday during my tutorial I missed it.)  While the boot comes in various sizes (mine is a Small) I do have to Velcro it quite a bit to contain everything.  That had been putting the circular bladder off to the side, skewing the plastic plate.  Imagine my surprise <g> when I "accidentally" discovered yesterday that the bladder is just Velcro-ed on, so it can easily be moved to wherever the opening in the plate ends up.  

In the evening I watched some movies on TV, and ended up heading to bed quite late, around 11:30.  Since I wasn't tired I was surprised at the hour, and read until almost midnight.  Still didn't sleep in this morning, but may have logged close to 6 hours.  This morning I'm back at the gym, and this afternoon is my appointment at the chiropractor.  With all the 'funny' walking/limping I've been doing the past month, it's a mini-miracle that my back/hip aren't that unhappy!

Monday, May 27, 2019

Can't exactly wish everyone a "happy" Memorial Day today, given the fact that we are honoring those who gave their lives to preserve our freedoms.

Yesterday afternoon Marcie chauffeured me to PetSmart, so Brownie has new food.  Now that I don't feel constrained to stick to the Small Breed option (which only comes in two varieties) there are a LOT of exciting flavors from which to choose next time.  That means Brownie won't have to eat the same boring stuff every day.  

FYI When I went to feed him this morning I was surprised to see that there was still some leftover from yesterday's 3:00 feeding!  I rattled his dish, but he didn't eat.  This is a first.... and not a particularly good sign.  

As always he enjoyed his visit to PetSmart (dogs to sniff at, others to bark at, places to lift his leg) though it was pretty funny when he (who can leap up into my arms, and thus has no trouble hopping into my SUV) had "difficulty" getting into her low-slung car.

I wish I'd remembered to weigh him there since he had definitely put on weight while I was gone.  (Tom possibly <g> gave him a fair amount of treats each day?)  Did loosen his halter yesterday, which had gotten quite snug.

Finished binding the Friendship Star quilt yesterday, but there's a good chance <g> I could get my scrap quilt back from Marcie today, ready to be bound.  Also got the suitcase emptied before bed - 

though admittedly a few items still need to be put away. 

Thought it was a dead moth on the floor along the wall by the couch last night, but upon closer inspection it turned out to be a sizeable spider!  Of course I would much rather come upon a scorpion (which actually could hurt me) but phobias by definition are IRrational fears.)  With no one else around to take care of the problem for me I had no other option (unless I wanted to move out of the house) than to chase it and capture it under a plastic 'glass'  Now it will have to sit and wait (and spend that time contemplating how mean - and foolish - it was to come into the house and terrify me?) until Mitch or Alex appear to truly deal with it.

I had missed Terry's call on Saturday.
Happily she tried again yesterday and we had a nice chat.

  Things are going well up in Colorado. While it wasn't surprising to hear that Neil is sleeping more, the good news is that he's eating well and still remembers how to chew and swallow. 

The house addition for Hilda has progressed to the point that Terry doubts they need any more access for large equipment and thus should be able to get the fence back up before our arrival in July.  

No doubt Brownie would prefer to roam freely, and visit the various pools and campsites instead of being contained in a yard. <g>  However he should have plenty of deer cruising by to keep him entertained when we're home and not up at the pools ourselves.  Here are some deer just outside the fence last summer.  

Our course the fence has never kept deer out of the yard...though they might think twice about jumping in if there's a dog there, especially if it's barking at them.

I thought we required major tree trimming in our yard... 
then saw this old photo someone posted on FB.