Sunday, May 31, 2020

Spent much of the weekend reading and thus today I reached the last page of Shaman, another very enjoyable read.

While I have already started the final book of the trilogy (Matters of Choice) unfortunately I have a busy week ahead of me and can't simply sit and read.

Today is Andy's 64th birthday.  

Tried calling my baby brother (twice) to wish him a happy, but never spoke with him and had to be content leaving a singing message.

Mary had wanted to know "if" I wanted some freshly-baked raisin bread - and even offered to deliver it.  Instead, Brownie and I made a trip over there for a change of pace.  Wore my mask going in, and then Mary and I social distanced across the living room while we thoroughly enjoyed the visit.  

Brownie acted happy to be someplace other than home; he again got excited when he saw the leash, and vocal when we went into the garage.  At Mary's he briefly explored out in her lovely backyard before sitting by the back door "asking" to come in.  He seemed content to lie by us, relaxing while we gabbed, and I didn't notice when he went off to explore - but then we heard a yelp.  

Though both of her cats are declawed, one of them obviously did "something" when Brownie approached.  Mary assumed it was Merlin (who is braver) but we found Shadow in her bedroom closet climbing to safer heights, and think it was actually him. 

I would love to learn of a friend's cat, with claws, who would be "willing" to teach Brownie to keep his distance from cats instead of chasing them.  IF I could train him to be wary of cats instead of chasing them he'd be more welcome at the hot springs, where he terrorized Shadow last summer.  

Received an e-mail today that the external battery for my laptop is scheduled for delivery tomorrow.  I'm looking forward to no longer needing to be tethered to a wall outlet.

Even though I mailed the checks for car insurance on May 8, I realized over the weekend that we never did receive the new Proof of Insurance cards.  Since the cards in all of our vehicles indicate that our insurance expired a couple of days ago (and Tom will be heading out of state in a few days to dig more fire obsidian) I see a trip to the insurance folks tomorrow for current cards.

Saturday, May 30, 2020

Morning Smiles!  

When you’re an older dog that has been around the block a few times, the idea of hanging out with puppies is probably not too appealing. Below you’ll meet a few of the poor pooches that now have to deal with all of the ear chewing, wrestling, and general puppy-ness that comes with getting a younger sibling. From the looks on their faces, they’re not too pleased about the changes in their households! 
 Brownie can rest assured 
that we have no plans to add another pooch to the family.

Friday, May 29, 2020

I am SO frustrated with technology, having had two issues today.

I need to scan in a photograph, which sounds easy enough.  But while I can get the printer to copy the photo (which is no help) I can't get it to scan.  When Alex came over to pick up his mail I assumed he would be able to figure out the problem.  But when he tried, actually doing all the same things I did ("it should work"), he got the same non-result.  

If I had a nickel for every time I heard "it should work" I'd be rich!

 I then Googled the directions for scanning from my printer, but that simply listed the exact steps we'd already gone through - multiple times.  

I just don't understand why computers are so mean to me...

I'd started reading the second book of Noah Gordon's trilogy (Shaman) after Marilyn had gotten it for me on "our" library site and then sent me the link in an e-mail.  Again I was enjoying it from the first page, but after I took a break to do some other things on the iPad and tried to go back to the book it was hiding from me.  Sent an SOS to Marilyn, but (anyone surprised?) the suggestions in her texts were of no help, so I called her hoping she could walk me through it.  Her tech help still didn't work, and so my frustration level just got worse and worse.

I wish I could just get real books from the library, but lately it seems that the ones I want are only available as audio books or e-books.  That being the case, and with the aggravation I have accessing them, the library may end up losing one of their best customers. 

Last evening we watched the next couple of episodes of History 101.

Plastics have transformed how we live, but progress comes at a high price: 7.8 billion tons of waste. Are plastics a miracle or a catastrophe?

Oil has brought great wealth to the Middle East and ignited major wars. Is it a blessing or a curse for the region, as well as the rest of the world?

Unfortunately I was struggling to stay awake by the end of the segment on oil (and it wasn't even 9:00!) so I probably need to re-watch that one.

I knew Brownie would get excited when he saw the leash come out (he did) and when we headed to the car he even got vocal about his excitement.  Naturally I felt somewhat guilty because I knew he wouldn't be happy when he realized his destination (he wasn't.) 

On the drive there, only a couple of miles, it's a good thing I was pay attention.  Driving along Yorkshire, just east of 35th, a car coming in the other direction apparently decided that the driver ahead of him wasn't going fast enough (though seemed to me to be going a reasonable speed), and passed him thus coming right at me. I laid on my horn, though he didn't swerve back into his own lane until he passed the "slowpoke" he obviously made it in time to avoid a head-on collision.  Did get my heart to racing, though.

Wanda had called this morning, shortly before, to let me know that she'd baked a chocolate cake and had a tublet for me "ready for pick-up".  What a nice surprise.  So after dropping off a sad Brownie I popped over to her place.  She apologized for mixing up baking soda and baking powder (she's having eye issues) and thought it hadn't risen like it was supposed to.  However it looked just fine to me - and tasted fine, also.

Just got back from picking up Brownie, who (though apparently a bit whiney) behaved in a gentlemanly manner during his bathing and nail trim and grind.  He was, however, more than anxious to leave PetSmart!

Here's a fun start to today's post.  Who doesn't enjoy a Rube Goldberg contraption?  While they're always creative, this one seems especially so.  It's pretty obvious what this guy has been during to pass the time while sequestering!

Last night's dreams included trips to an airport.  In one I was flying 'somewhere' (and had ditched my crutch) and in another Brownie and I were picking up someone' (who never arrived) at another airport.  I also awoke at one point with acid reflux, which sent me racing to the bathroom - but happily everything stayed down.

Busy <g> day today.  Brownie has an 11:00 appointment for a nail trim (he's way overdue since his last one was in early March) and these days they also require them to be bathed, so I will have to leave him.  Of course it's still muddy around the yard edges, and with standing water in the lowest spots, so with Murphy's Law "still" in effect I predict that he'll come home feeling soft and smelling good but that possibly won't last.

At 2:00 we have a conference call with Becky.  Tom missed her first one when he was gone delivering a couple of dozen fire obsidian stones to the GIA guy, Robert, in California.

And speaking of his stones - after yesterday's e-mail regarding the Tucson show (and for a whole slew of reasons) it is HIGHLY unlikely that he will be a vendor there next year.  

Thursday, May 28, 2020

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Anyone who knows me can imagine how "happy" I was (definitely not!) to find that notice when I went to blog this morning.  Looks like another learning curve coming at me....

Yesterday I'd picked a couple of the pinkest peaches to see if they'd ripen in the house, and this morning I ate the one that felt a little less hard.  It tasted okay, just not as sweet and juicy as ones that ripen a bit more.  But we're getting close!

The book I ordered for my free Coursera class arrived this afternoon.

So after I read the assigned chapter(s) I will then "attend" the first class.

Tom is out of reading material and drove down to Bookman's - 
only to find them closed.

Another lazy day - no real excuse, though the heat certainly doesn't help.

Yesterday, shortly before the water arrived, I collected the latest crop of downed grapefruits and also checked on our peaches.  While they have started turning a nice rosy peach color, they are still quite hard and not ready for harvest.  However the birds have already sampled a couple of the un-netted ones, and no doubt will continue to do so.  Here's hoping the net experiment will prove highly successful at reserving the bulk of the crop for us without any bird pecks!

Last evening Tom took Brownie out for his walk since I didn't want to risk getting tangled up in the leash with one hand busy on a crutch and the other with a flashlight.  

While Brownie did take care of "some" business, 
he also kept pulling his old trick of lying down on the job.  

With high heat today (it was already toasty even though I took Brownie out quite early) I expect the water to soak in quickly, and hope that this evening I can just monitor him in the backyard.  Of course should he spot something to chase and tromp around in the muddy perimeter <sigh> I will have to rinse off his feet, an activity he doesn't appreciate.  Sure hate having the dog door closed off every two weeks now for irrigation, but at least this time of year it should be less of an issue.

I was actually surprised this morning that more of the water hadn't soaked in yet, but the day's high heat should help with that.  Pokey was also out and about early this morning, patrolling along the fence line.

This morning I put in my first order with Chewy (for a couple of cartons of Brownie's wet packet food) to see how that goes.  It's a little more expensive than going to PetSmart - but of course much handier.  There was the usual disclaimer about deliveries possibly taking longer than usual because of Covid19, so if the package doesn't arrive in a timely fashion I may still need to make another in-person trip to PetSmart.

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

I had my echocardiogram test this morning.  That took about an hour (it was a very thorough one) and the technician, Lance, was good about explaining to me what I was seeing on the screen.  Naturally the images were not as much fun as the pregnancy sonograms, when it was quite thrilling to see the Lisa’s and Alex’s hearts beating <g> but for certain portions today at least there were lots of pretty colors.  

Today we had irrigation, a day later than usual since due to Monday's holiday they didn't start our section's schedule until Tuesday.  Our main gate, which flows into the center ditch that feeds into the front half of the property, got clogged up at some point and unfortunately went unnoticed by Tom for a while.  As a result we lost some water which overflowed into the neighbor's horse pasture, so the front yard didn't get quite as much water as last cycle.  But it still seemed that things got well-hydrated, just in time for this week's sudden high temps.

We started watching a Netflix series, History 101, tonight.  

nfographics and archival footage deliver bite-size history lessons on scientific breakthroughs, social movements and world-changing discoveries.

The first episode was on fast food, the second on the space race, and the third on the rise of China as as economic superpower.  They are short (each only a little over 20 minutes) but quite informative and interesting. 

Not much to report about yesterday.  Pokey is still rearranging furniture on the back patio, creating quite a racket as she drags it along, and all too often getting "tangled" up in it.  Obviously hers is not a species that learns from its mistakes....

I'd found a skinny pool noodle at the grocery store on my last visit, and have attached it to Brownie's agility "equipment" though I haven't yet gotten around to trimming the end.  

Brownie, however, is beyond leery of it.  I couldn't get him to come over and inspect it even when I laid one of his treats on the wooden base.  Could be a long learning curve...

In the afternoon I got into the pool, but instead of lounging/reading on the raft I actually swam a bit, mostly giving my legs some exercise.  My plan <g> is to continue to do that on a regular basis.

Last night I watched Benny and Joon, a 1993 movie I'd never seen, and enjoyed it.  I especially liked Johnny Depp's character (he showcases his talents in a number of scenes) as well as the entertaining betting during the poker scenes.

Now off for my cardiogram test.

Monday, May 25, 2020

This morning I got everything done that I'd wanted to accomplish before Marcela arrived around 10:30 -  and still had time to finish the book!

When I answered the doorbell to let her in I was stunned (but thrilled!) to see Elena (and her fiancĂ© Alex) standing there!  What an absolutely wonderful surprise!  While we couldn't hug (social distance, folks!) it was still great to see all of them.  

Naturally <g> my first order of business was to gift them their quilt!
I think they liked it.  :-) 

So did Marcela.

Elena and Alex had to get on the road and drive back to California, but Marcela spent the day.  We ate, and gabbed, and ate some more, finally waving goodbye around 9:00.

Another way too early morning, 
but at least I wasn't awakened by Brownie during the night.

I read while I sipped my morning coffee, and since I am already past page 700 no doubt I will finish the book at some point today.  Like Tom, I look forward to reading some of Noah Gordon's other books.

There are a number of things I'd like to accomplish before Marcela arrives this morning, though I did get the floors swept and mopped yesterday.  However since she's known me a long time (almost 40 years) she is well aware <g> that Martha Stewart doesn't live here.  

After I finish up on the computer I'll get started on my list.