Tuesday, December 30, 2014

It's Official

I've entered another decade of life, as measured in years at least.  Funny, the feelings of 'being' 60 are different that the feelings of getting ready to turn it.  I'm kinda numb I guess.  Not sure how it all happened kind of numb.

I'm in the end of year trying to get organized to start next year on the right foot mode of things now.  I've spot treated my carpet, which has been bothering me.  Who puts down solid light beige carpet?  Not me, but the woman who remodeled this place did.  I bought a Green Machine carpet spot steam cleaner, and I tend to give it a workout.  I'm doing laundry (it is 7am) and finished hand laundry awhile ago.  I'm making lists of recipes and ingredients so I can start cooking at home and taking in my lunch (dinner?  whatever I'm eating in the middle of the night...) to work instead of buying pre-made dinners at the 24-hour health food grocery near work and spending at least $10/night.  I'll make yet another backup of my computers and store the external drive in my locker at work.

Las  Vegas was fun last week.  I did win a bunch of money, but it meant that I had fun playing on their money instead of mine.  I never come home ahead, but this time I came home not nearly as far behind.

The past year has been going through my stuff and organizing/getting rid of the top layer.  This next year I hope to make much more progress on getting rid of the things that don't work for me anymore, hobbies that I no longer to, finish projects that are half complete, etc.  The mobile home needs some maintenance that I'm thinking I'll do the last of January/first of February as that is when the weather here is usually beautiful.  The Jeep also needs some maintenance, so it will be worked in.  Mostly just the stuff of living, which it seems I've been too busy with moving and working and moving again the past few years to keep up with.

I have noticed that I posted less this past year than any other year since I started blogging.  I'll work on that as well.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014


I'm in the process of getting a new smart phone.  So far I keep hitting dead ends.  I thought that I had finally out-smarted AT&T, but no, I didn't.  I have Consumer Cellular for my cell phone service.  I am very happy with them.  It is waaaaay cheaper than any of the big boys, and uses AT&T towers so I have the same coverage as if I was with them.  My cheap(er) smart phone I bought from chinavasion.com out of China when I lived in Honduras has worked just fine as a phone, but a lot of the data stuff was iffy.  The location stuff for the GPS didn't work and I only got 2G speeds, but I'm not a huge data hog anyway so I didn't care.  However, I dropped that phone while I was on vacation and not only cracked the screen, but it started turning off randomly, as in the middle of calls.  It is also my alarm clock, so I wasn't feeling all warm and fuzzy about it anymore.

When I went to chinavasion.com to find a new phone I was doing a lot of research.  What I found is that the frequencies that AT&T uses for 3G and 4G are different than the international phones use.  Nothing on that site would give me the higher speeds.  Since 2G is going to be phased out, I decided I need to find a phone that will give me the 3G and 4G.  Which means I'm looking for an AT&T phone.  I thought I was smart and bought a cheap ($8) flip phone that is an AT&T Go Phone, and it worked just fine.  Woo Hoo!  So, I went back and got a nice HTC 610 Desire smart Go Phone, and started using it.  I had to go back again and get a nano SIM as my normal one wouldn't fit in the new smart phone.  No problem, Consumer Cellular gives me a discount on my bill for the $10 the new SIM costs.  Got it all changed over and life is good.  Except that I can't get the data to work.  It says on the Go Phones that they are locked for 6 months (basically $300 to AT&T before they unlock it), but I had hoped that since I'm using their towers it wouldn't matter.  Well, the phone part works, but the data is locked.  So, the phone will go back to WalMart tomorrow.  Back to square one.

I'll look online for an unlocked AT&T smart phone.  I've been told I should stay away from the Moto G that is Consumer Cellular's offering, and I can get an IPhone from them but I really want to stay away from the IWorld as much as possible.  This shouldn't be this difficult.  In the rest of the world it isn't.  Consumer Cellular has been great about all this, and I've called them several times in this process.  Their customer service is all US based, and very helpful and friendly.  Highly recommend them.

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

Quiet time of changes

I have again switched back to nights.  Hopefully they will leave me alone for awhile now and I can get a routine going.  At the moment I go to the kitchen and am not sure if I should pour a glass of wine or a cup of strong coffee.  Looking at the time doesn't help.  I think I'll opt for the wine when I post this.

Small organizing and projects.  I'm knitting a baby blanket for TurtleLady & Bill's first grandchild due in a couple of months.  My sweater is on hold as the blanket has a deadline of sorts.  I wasn't sure I liked it, but as it grows (the blanket, not the baby) I'm coming around to deciding it make the kind of statement I can send off with a smile.  Maybe a progress picture later.

Favorite Neighbor (her blog name for now) 's family helped me put together shelves and run an extension cord to the front of the shed, so I'm slowly getting things arranged out there.  I found the camping gear that was AWOL.  So, now everything has been handled at least once I think.

I keep thinking that I should be more reflective about the 60th birthday coming up on the 23rd.  However, my life is much more settled and most of the negative drama has left the building.  I'm not having much trouble at the moment with the idea that I'm entering another decade of life.  Ummm, don't look at the expensive face cream(s) I've bought in the past few months.  They don't count.

Saturday, November 15, 2014


Once I got back to work, I ended up changing to days from nights.  Next week I change a bit again, then hopefully the week after I'm back on nights.  I don't do much but survive when details like that cause havoc with my schedule.

One of my favorite neighbors is now back.  Her son and dil drove her down from MN and will fly back in a couple of weeks.  It was mentioned that they had to follow a snow plow out of town as they left.  They let me help celebrate her 88th birthday last night by sharing the chocolate cream birthday pie.  See why she is one of my favorite neighbors.  :)

So, 3 months ago I could even spell DBA and now I are one.  As soon as my access on the network gets sorted out (3 weeks into that so far...)  and I get a bit more trained I'll be official and back on my preferred shifts, weekend nights.  I've already made reservations for Vegas next month for my 60th birthday, so I need to be back on that shift by then.  Crossing fingers.

Now starts the easy time of year here.  Coolish mornings where a light jacket is welcomed, sunny warm days that make strolling around an enjoyable activity.  Folks have come out of hiding from the heat and sit on their porches and wave or say hi as I walk by.  Life is pretty good right now.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Vacation Recap

Yep, I'm home in Phoenix again.  I haven't written much as I've not felt up to par.  This impacted my vacation as well as work this week.  I do want to get some of what I did out on pixels, though, as I'm finding as time goes on I enjoy going back and reading my blog to see what I was doing a few years ago.  This will be 'a few years ago' soon enough.

The airport did have my luggage the next morning, so from now on I will look for non-stop flights from Phoenix to Kansas City, or wherever I'm headed.  At least I will try not to connect via Denver.  The trip home was uneventful.  However, Southwest's overhead bins seem to be smallish.  I changed the carryon I used (I own at least 3 and maybe 4) and still it was tight.  I've used these carryon's for years with no issue on United flights.

My vacation was planned in a manner to roll with the punches, no real agenda, etc.  Unfortunately, I wasn't feeling well and didn't 'roll' very well.  Could be I'm getting older and crankier.  maybe.  Also, the area I used to know fairly well I haven't hung out in for 5 or so years.  It no longer felt like 'home'.  That was one thing I wanted to see.  Towards the end of the vacation I ended up connecting with friends in Nashville and I got more comfortable in my old haunts.  My take away was that I need to scout my locations more, and make more time for friends.  I ended up in hotels a lot, and I hate to spend the money on that.  I just didn't enjoy the camping that I did in the Smokies.  Partly because it cost $20/night and didn't include shower facilities, partly because it rained every time I entered the park.  I have a tent that is now in the give-away pile.  I remembered why I went to a hammock, but I can't use a hammock in a state or national park.  I did buy a sleeping mat, the $8 blue mat from WalMart and also their $35 knock off of the thermarest.   Between the two I was comfortable and dry in my tent.  It was the entering and exiting that was an issue.

I'm on my new schedule now, 8PM to 6AM.  It is an adjustment.  I'll get it together in a couple of weeks.  Signs around the park here saw that the winter residents (snowbirds, but they don't like to be called that...) are starting to show up or are anticipated.  Temps are cooler, and it rained again last evening for awhile.  Cats were fine when I got home, but Rasta started coughing again today.  I'll watch him and make a decision on what to do.  Unlike last time he is acting fine.  It was when he got subdued and sickly acting that I rushed him to the vet last time.

Gotta go pee in a cup for my work background/drug test checkup for the year.  Not an issue, but a minor hassle.  That is all that is going on here, along with unpacking and a  notebook page double column of to-do's.

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Now What

So, I've run off the end of any 'plans' I had for this vacation.  I have the rental car, I'm in Nashville, Mom is off to stay with her friends and I'm in a Starbucks (don't hate...) getting ready to head off somewhere in the rental car to have a bunch of fun.  Nothing has really jelled as to what to do.  I spent too much money, as usual, in REI here.  I decided not to get the one thing I came down here to get, a sleeping pad.  I decided to just get a cheap one at WalMart.  $8 vs. $100.  There is a difference.  However, for this trip not really enough to justify.  Maybe.  I've about decided to go back and get the one in there.  But, typing this I changed my mind, again.  Really, I don't use my camping stuff hardly at all now.  sigh.  Welcome to my vacation.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

On Vacation

I'm on Mom's computer in Kansas City.  Flying in was a bit more of an issue than usual.  I was to leave at 3:00pm and route through Denver.  Weather kept us waiting for clearance to head that way (on Denver's end).  I walked over to the counter and asked to be re-routed since I wanted to get to Kansas City anyway.  I was given a boarding pass for a direct flight leaving in an hour.  That flight was also delayed.  But, as we were leaving around 5:30 the Denver bound plane was still sitting there.  Who knows where my luggage is.  Hopefully we can get it at the Kansas City airport this morning.  I have my clothes, it is just my sweaters and camping gear and such that is missing.

I may not have a lot of access while I'm moving around the next couple of weeks.  We head to Nashville this morning.  Then I have no plans except to wander around the Southeast for a week.  I'll check in when I can.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Raining again

I don't think I'll need an ark, though.  It is a light rain this time.  Everyone was freaking out at the forecast after the last go-round.  At least here in Mesa we only have enough to soak the ground for a bit.

I'm getting closer to finalizing my vacation plans for the 29th on.  I'm going to stay in the Southeast and play around in the Smokies on the week that I leave Mom in Nashville visiting friends.  I need a week just to wander around my old favorite places.  Not sure how many folks I'll get to see while I'm back.

Here at home I'm just clearing and cleaning and fixing broken stuff and mending clothes and generally trying to get my homelife situated.  I'm tired of living among plastic totes lined up everywhere.  I can only throw a tablecloth over so many and call them end tables.  I'm starting to look at those plastic Rubbermaid storage sheds to put behind my mobile home to hold the empty totes that I'm not using right now.  It is a step towards the endgame.  I'm looking at those as a more temporary measure that I can either move with me if/when I leave here, or sell to someone else and it would be easier to move either way.  Still researching.

I'm still in a funk.  However, I'm in a winning streak of sorts at the casinos so I'm at least breaking even for now.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

I didn't drown

The 100 years' rain didn't cause me any hardship the other day as I was at work during the rain, and the flooding had all drained away by the time I got off work.  Water here is kind of like snow in the South - wait a couple of hours and it is usually gone.

I went to Vegas again last week on my days off.  While making myself wake up to turn off the alarm to go to work when I got back I had the thought hit me from some place deep inside 'I'm not happy'.  When that happens I start thinking.  I knew that I hurt from all the walking I always do in Vegas, and I was very tired from having my routine thrown off because of my strange working hours that are difficult to stick to on my days off.  So, body was low energy.  Diet hasn't been great.  First steps are to get sleep and good nutrition squared away.  Then look to tie up some nagging details.  I've done all this now, and also canceled the second Vegas trip that I'd scheduled for next week as being too taxing physically right now.  I'll enjoy it more in November or December.  I'm making plans for my vacation at the end of the month to get away, back East to see how that all feels.  Once all the data is in, I'm going to do some looking around, inside and out, and make some decisions.  When I get too unhappy, the Universe tends to do things like send me to Honduras.  I'm careful what I wish for now.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Who was I again? **Update**

I know, don't post for a long while, then 2 in an hour or so...

There was a time, awhile ago (awhile measured in decades...) that I was mechanical.  Not my body, but my profession and my personal lifestyle.  I did, among other things, a lot of my own work on my vehicles.  It was helped along by the fact that my friends also did most of their own work on their cars and houses an anything else that broke.

I remember a really fun (and I do really mean fun) evening where I went to a friend's house in my '86(?) Toyota truck that had an issue with sometimes starting, sometimes just clicking because the starter had some issue.  It was to be a simple procedure, pull off the starter, go to the parts store, buy a rebuilt one and reinstall it.  However, we took too long and the store was closed.  This friend didn't want the hassle of reinstalling a bad starter just to have to redo it all again some other time, so we did the most obvious thing:  we rebuilt the old one.  Upon taking the starter apart, one of the contacts was worn away.  So we went to the hardware store looking for something brass to fabricate a new right-angle contact.  Found a brass fitting the right thickness (originally starting life in the plumbing section), went home and he made good use of his dremmel (spell check wants to change the spelling of that to 'remodel') tools and fashioned a new contact that was better than the original stock one.  By 9 or 10pm I had a working truck, and that starter was still working fine when I traded in the truck 10 years later.

All that to say, I feel terribly guilty, as if I'm letting the fellowship down if/when I use a paid-for mechanic to do simple things.  Like oil changes.  Especially oil changes.  I've had 3 Toyota trucks starting with that one in '86 (or '84, I really can't remember, sadly).  I was taught that when shopping for a new vehicle, the first or at least second thing to look for is the oil filter to make sure you don't have to pull the engine in order to do an oil change.  Not really an issue as the original Toyota trucks (as opposed to, say, the ones they make now) were made for real people to drive.  The other thing that goes without saying, which is why the oil filter placement is 1st, is that it is a manual stick shift transmission.

Enter the Jeep I bought in 2008.  It had a 5 year/100K miles warranty.  It spent 2.5 of those years in storage when I was in Honduras.  Working on it hasn't been really an issue as it only has 65K miles on it even today.  I ran out of the 5 years, though.  No reason to have a dealership do the simple stuff like oil changes anymore.  The last time I had the oil change done, I was ready to be again upset with a dealership.  They probably didn't really do anything wrong, but I felt the guilt and shame of turning Yuppie (ok the Y for young really doesn't apply anymore) when I handed over the keys to the intake guy.

It is time for an oil change again.  Also, my 'new' Jeep is starting to have some minor issues.  The kind of things that a dealership can end up shaking their head and turn a $50 issue into multiple thousands of dollars, at least in my head.  So, simple solution, I do the oil change myself again and while I'm at it I look at YouTube videos on the issues the Jeep is having and at least go into the dealership being knowledgeable about the issues and the condition of my own Jeep.

Except...  for 2 months I've been afraid to pop the hood.  It started when I glanced at it and realized I've owned the Jeep for 6 years and never opened the hood.  What?  Me?  I then got concerned about all kinds of silly things, the unknown and all.  The Jeep is quite a bit larger than my previous trucks.  And so on.  For 2 months I've looked at the Jeep and backed away.

Today, sweaty and no water and the temperature tolerable I confronted my fears.  I popped the hood.  I was glad to find a secondary latch holding the hood backing up the rubber clasps that I was afraid was all that was between me and the hood flying up as I drove down the road.  Took me awhile to figure out how to do the prop so that it was anchored and not just vaguely holding up the weight of the hood.  I had to climb up on the front bumper to look at the engine.  Then I had to find the dipstick.  Luckily, the Jeep isn't using oil, and isn't ready for another quart yet.  I slid under the Jeep and don't see any obvious leaks of anything, and found the oil filter right where it should be and easy to get to.

Progress.  I may or may not actually do this oil change.  But I at least know what is under the hood now.

The water came on around 10am.  I showered, then watched some YouTube videos.  Also remembered what started all this was that I ran out of windshield washer fluid.  I had a wonderful dealership in Olympia, WA that did everything but hug and kiss me on the way out when I took the Jeep to them for service.  Oil, filters, fluids, and they washed and vacuumed it for me without costing half my paycheck.  While I was in Honduras my Uncle had the servicing done for me at the dealership in Platte City, MO, and they were great.  I'm assuming they, but it might have been my Uncle, did all of the above.  When I went into the dealership here, I was upset that even though I had an appointment, and was there early, they said it would be a couple of hours before they worked on it as there were others before me.  I said What???  I had the first appointment!  And I'm early!  So they put me in the express line, which might mean nothing but the oil gets filled/changed.

So, I showered, then watched the videos.  I checked out the engine air intake filter, and vacuumed out the housing.  I'll change the filter when I get a new one, and I now know what it looks like.  I'll also worry about that darned 4th clip on the housing at that time.  3 will work ok till then.

I filled the washer fluid resevior.  That darned bottle of fluid won't be rolling around on the passenger floor anymore as it has for the past 2 months.

I see which kind of filter is on the blower motor.  I also see that there isn't a filter on the air that goes to the blower when it comes from the inside of the passenger compartment, so that isn't what is the issue with the intermittent cold air from the air compressor.

I'm adding hand cleaner to the list of stuff to get.  And remembering why I had so many stained tshirts back then.

It's 11:30 and I'm sweaty again.  Enough knowledge for one day.

Water, water, everywhere, except...

We've had 2 frog strangler storms with high wind since 4pm yesterday, and a few nice downpours in between. The ground is soaking the water up like it hasn't had a drink in 6 months, which is somewhat close to actual time since good, soaking rains showed up here. After one very close lightening/thunder clap that sent the cats scrambling, I expected to lose power. The power stayed on. As the sky lightened up an the rain slacked I started to get on with the day, starting with a shower. Except, no water from the faucet. Seems in the process of the above a water main broke on the other side of the park. Water is off for the next several hours at least. This is an issue as this is shower/laundry/cleaning day around here. Not to say it is the only day I take a shower, but yesterday being my first day of 3 off, I pretty much just lazed around and never really got around to cleaning up.

Dizzy commented on Sunday about how the full moon affects us, including things like births and deaths. He lost 2 friends last Saturday night. I remember I stepped outside from work and was amazed at the beauty moon sometime around 3:30am. When a co-worker didn't show up at 6am, one of the guys texted him to remind him to come in. The guy's girlfriend called back. Seems that the co-worker died that night. We still don't know how or why, or no one is saying. He was 52. So, I will probably equate a large moon with doing a security check on friends and close co-workers from now on.

September is shaping up to be a traveling month. More as the time gets nearer. And, the new guys at work still don't have laptops. So, nerves are even more frayed now. Part of the reason I'm quiet here, as well as it being summer and I just don't do much when it is hot.

Saturday, July 26, 2014


Contrary to appearances, I'm alive and fine. The heat has arrived in Phoenix, over 110, which is my mark for 'hot'. This just happened this week, so I'm considering a good summer so far. Now I'm hiding in the air conditioning. The cats are also healthy and mostly happy. The younger on is again being a terror. I need to spend more time with him, I guess. I am sorry I got the second cat, as Bosley was purfect just as he was. I was afraid he'd be lonely, but I think he would vote for that rather than terrorized as he is sometimes now.

Work is still in the holding pattern. I can't transfer yet because the new guys don't have their laptops so they can start covering shifts. Not anyone local's fault, but we are still short staffed and nerves are frayed.

Sorting and such are on-going at home. I'm not keeping up with the scanning or shredding of paperwork as I would like to. For me the process always seems to take a long time. My sights are on September, when things should start to cool off a bit and I'm making vacation plans to head back East for a couple of weeks.

Friday, July 04, 2014

Thank you, Ed

In my comments Ed has tried to keep me up to date on a bill in the AZ legislature about the Elio car and attempts to get an 'enclosed, 3 wheeled' car to not need a motorcycle endorsement to be legal to drive. Everything I've found is dated April 22, and it was waiting on the Gov. to sign it. When I duckduckgo it, that SB# is about gun control. Maybe it is part of that package, I didn't look too deeply. No notice on whether it was signed into law or not.

I'm at work making Holiday pay. Nothing is going on, but I'm being paid to be here. Previously when I was talking about how I am jogging (for some definitions of the word), I said the next celebration would be when I hit 300' or 50 pillars in the wall I run beside. Yesterday I ran the 50 pillars, walked up and back again that far, and then ran another 40 pillars or 240'. I felt it the rest of the day, but feel ok today. I just need to keep at it. Also, part of my goal was to be able to do 100 pushups of some kind. I've decided that if I can do 100 in a day (12 hours?) I'll consider it a goal met. I'm up to 20. Pushing up from a counter, not the floor. Progress. I can do 2 girly pushups now (knees), which is 2 more than I could do this time last year.

Yesterday I went to Costco in Superstitions Springs, not the one down by work. The one over in SS is a bit nicer, and has better samples. I totally forgot that it was the day before a Holiday, but it wasn't too teribly bad for all the crowd. I spent $125, so I figure if I can eat from my pantry for 2 weeks I'm ahead. So far so good. I definitely have enough food to make it. After I went to bed I was trying to rationalize not having taken the time to make something to bring into work today. Then I realized I could bring in a can of the lentil soup I got. Then I was trying to rationalize that I hadn't made any oatmeal to bring in for breakfast, and I knew that meant I would still go to Walmart at 2am to get something to eat. So, I got back up and made enough oatmeal for 2 days, and added cinnamon, cardamon, rasinens, craisens, sugar, and after it was in the bowls I added slivered almonds and honey. It was good this morning. So far I haven't got to get anything new to eat other than what I've brought from home. One of the samples at Costco was green pea crisps. I guess it is like a crouton for salads and such. It tasted like crispy green pea soup. You can get anything at Costco. They made up for it by also having vanilla ice cream samples.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Plodding along

It seems like I'm not making much progress.  I do remember that I get this way every summer.  No energy, no enthusiasm.  I did not win my riches in Las Vegas, so I'm still working.  :)  Things there are still in a holding pattern as well.  My eyes are now on September.  It doesn't start cooling off here yet at that point, but I'm starting the process of looking for flights back to MO to visit, and it hopefully will be cooler back there by then.

The cats are healthy and I guess happy.  Most of the time they are fun.  Way too much of the time they are destroying stuff or accidentally(?) hurting me with their claws or teeth.  Just playing.  I'm learning to trim claws.  Mostly Rasta, the younger one, is just too energetic and curious for my lifestyle.  He also is the most affectionate one, which is what saves him.  So far.

I now have insurance on the mobile home.  The taxes are paid up.  I'm totally legal.  For now.  For most of the other stuff, it's one step forward 3 steps back. 

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Clean Jeep

I don't know if I've mentioned it, but it doesn't rain a whole lot here in Phoenix.  That is a problem in that with no rain, the dirt doesn't get washed off the Jeep.  With the soft top I can't go to most car washes, I need one with the wand that goes around the Jeep after I pull into the stall, not the kind that gets pulled along an assembly cleaning line.  I haven't found one of those here yet.  There is some physics in why, but I'll take their word for it.  I ran it through the one in Platte City, MO a couple of times back a year ago February to get the road salt off from my Chicago runs.  That one is totally awesome, and if it was here I'd be running the Jeep through it weekly.  Really.  Then I moved out here.  The poor Jeep has seen very little water since.

A few weeks ago I unearthed the hose assembly Mom gave me.  It's one of those wonder hose things you can ball up 50' of in you hand when it isn't full of water.  That's great, but it also lets it hide.  However, I wanted the Jeep clean and today I did it, washed the Jeep the old fashioned way with a bucket of soapy water and the hose.  Not a lot of hose water like I did in my childhood in the midwest, this is a desert.  But I also hosed down the side of the mobile home that is inside the car port as the way the wind is here is sucks dust and all up into the car port.  So, the Jeep, the mobile home, and I got hosed down nice and good.

I then got my new small vac out and had to search for an electric outlet outside.  Found one, and managed to pretty much vacuum out all the dust and palm tree debris (small seed-like things that get everywhere...).  Then I wiped down the inside dash and steering wheel and console.

The reason for all this is I'm going to Vegas again next week.  This time I'm staying at Paris, the ritsy folk place.  I plan to actually use Valet Parking (mostly because I don't know where the Paris self-park is) and I want to make sure there isn't anything I'd miss lurking in a corner of the Jeep.  I also don't want to be ashamed to have a Paris valet take my keys and get into my nice, new (ok, now 6 yo) Jeep.  So, Jeep is ready.  I'm sweaty and tired and sore.

I also jogged 40 pillars this morning.  It doesn't hurt a lot more to do 40 than 25.  Pain is the same.  I'll celebrate when I hit 300'.  I'm 60' or 10 pillars from there.

Thursday, June 05, 2014


I did my walk early today as I have things I want to do and most of them have me taking a shower first.  I figured I should do my walk/run before taking a shower.  So, around 5am, just as the sun was lighting the sky I went out.  I walk/run along a side street that has little or no traffic along one side of my mobile home park.  The park has a concrete block wall along it with pillars every 6ft or so.  The first day I jogged I made it past 15 of the pillars.  The second day, 25.  Today, 35.  So, I'm off to a good start on jogging.  I'll take 4 days off from jogging and just walk on the treadmill the days I work since I can't get to do it until after noon when it is way too hot to be outside for me.

Other than that I've been lazy around here these days off.  I did finish the baby blanket and I am rinsing it out now.  I do that for baby blankets as I have cats and I want to get as much of the cat hair and such off as I can before I give it to a baby.  The baby isn't due until September, but I'll take it into my co-worker (the husband) on Monday morning as that is the next time I work with him.  I will try to get a picture of it here.  It ended up 37" x 36".

As for the Elio car, yes, I'll have to get a motorcycle endorsement to drive it.  In 4 states, unfortunately Missouri being one of them, I even have to wear a helmet even though it is an enclosed car.  The hope is that laws will change for 3 wheeled cars by then.  Of course, the flip side of that is they may then be classified as a car for plates and insurance.  With a replacement cost of under $7K I can't believe either of those will be much.

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Car of the Future?

I just reserved a spot in line for a new car, to be delivered sometime next year:


I can't figure out how to post a picture of it that is the right size, but it is a 3-wheeled car built on a chassis like the CamAm Spyder, with 2 wheels in front and one in back.  Seats 2, has heat and ac and a radio and usb ports.  Gas mileage is projected to be 49city/84highway.  And it will cost $6,800.00 and no, I didn't miss a zero there.  Under seven thousand dollars for a new car and it is licensed and insured as a motorcycle (read:  cheaper)

So, I figure I've gambled $100 on less before, what it cost to make my reservation.  Maybe by next summer I'll have a new ride.


I have my daily walk in already.  It was cool enough to walk outside at 5:30 am, so I did.  Inspired by Gypsy moving into a jog, I did the same.  I jogged until my legs started mentioning it might be a good idea to stop, maybe 80-90 feet into it.  My lungs caught up to the fact that I wasn't just walking about 10 steps after I slowed back down, and I felt it in my chest muscles for awhile during the rest of my walk.  It isn't just the leg muscles that need to get into shape, it takes muscles to move my breathing in and out while exercising, and those muscles haven't been working hard lately, either.

I came back in and I'm working on getting one of my laptops up to date enough to hook the feed-through scanner to it so I can scan papers while sitting in my recliner.  When I turned it on yesterday or the day before (forget which) it was reaaalllly slow.  It aggravates me when my computers don't perform up to my standards, I mean, I do this for a living!  So this morning I deleted off all old programs, especially since I don't really use that laptop much anymore.  Then I defragged it.  After a reboot it was running a lot better.  Then I looked at a folder of old bookmarks from the late 2000's, up to maybe 2008?  It was nice to find places I don't visit anymore, sad to see some that are no longer updated, and I found that a former friend is doing a bicycle tour.  So, I will copy that folder to my current desktop and merge the links into my life again.

One blog was making a statement about how blogging has seemingly turned from a nice way to express oneself and meet with like-minded folks into something to 'create content' and 'monetize'.  This blog entry was from a couple of years ago when blogging changed quite a lot in a short period of time as it was 'discovered' by large numbers of folks.  My blog stays pretty old-school.  I don't mind monetizing so much if it doesn't get in the way of the blog itself.  This blog isn't monetized for one main reason:  I have a good job.  I know several folks have links and ads because they are on a fixed or low income and it is a way to bring in some money they wouldn't otherwise have.  I am currently making a good paycheck so I don't try to compete with those folks for those dollars.  I just give thanks for my ability to stay employed and go on.

On a related note, I had my review with my boss.  He looked at me earlier in the day and patted me and said, 'it's good, don't worry so much' and I shrugged and said 'well, I already cleaned out my locker, so I'm good...'  In reality, it was a good review.  I can't move to the other department yet because they need me where I am now for awhile yet.  Remember when I said we'd been told to 'hang on for April 1' for things to get better?  Well, things move slower than that.  Some of the new folks didn't pass their background check, and others are having to wait for their laptops to show up, and then they have to be trained.  So, I got a lot of flowery words saying how much he needs me where I am and what a good job I'm doing.  For now, I'm valuable.  I'll go with that.

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Not Reinvented Yet

It has been suggested that I should post that I'm fine and the guns are still in the closet. Not that I have guns, but that I haven't gone postal or anything. I keep meaning to post about the progress on the baby blanket that is almost finished, but haven't gotten it together to take a picture yet. I'm walking 4 days out of 5 at least a mile, although I've moved into the workout room at the park and to a treadmill because even at 5:30am (right after daybreak) it is already too hot for me to want to walk outside. Work is still in a holding pattern.

I still don't feel comfortable in my clothes. The jeans I bought several weeks back have shrunk up and are too short, above my ankle bone, so 3 of the 5 pairs should be donated. I'm going to look in the thrift shop next time, as those jeans should have shrunk up as much as they are going to. The next phase, as I continue to move through my clothes, is to also start on the boxes and boxes of papers I have stashed in corners and under tables. That will get moving in earnest during the next string of days off. Lots of scanning and shredding to do.

I'm still pondering things like priorities and where I am (mentally, physically, geographically) vs. where I think I want to be, and ways to get there. The cats are doing fine. I'm doing mostly ok with them. The smaller one is still wayyy to energetic and gets into everything and up on everything. They both use the litter box 100%, and other than paper don't destroy anything, so while I'm sure Rasta (the small one) thinks his name is 'GET DOWN FROM THERE!!!' mostly I'm enjoying them.

Monday, May 12, 2014


The trip to Las Vegas helped me step back to a longer range view of my current life. I watched the people passing by when I would sit. There are a lot of people passing by on the Strip, and along corridors in the Hotels and casinos. I was looking for a 'look', an attitude, and style that I could use as a starting point. I saw a lot of diversity in fashion, ages, levels of dress. I didn't see a lot that did much for me, as in made me think I wanted to try to copy it or use it to start my new look or lifestyle. As far as clothing, I did find that when the clothes fit the person, size-wise, no matter the person's age, gender, or level of dressiness, the outfit 'worked'.

Most of us seem to still be trying to fit into clothes that don't work for us anymore. And, of course, clothes are more than a metaphor, mostly the most obvious level of change in my life right now. I've lived for the past several years where under 90 degrees is chilly and under 70 degrees has me pulling out a coat and turning on the heat in the Jeep as I drive to work. Between my time in Honduras and now living in Phoenix most of my heavier clothing is 10-20 years old. It is tight, and not appropriate for my current lifestyle. It is difficult to get rid of closets full of clothes for me, though. I'm working my way through it.

Pretty much all of my large stash of makeup is over 5 years old, a lot of it older than that. I don't wear makeup anymore. It will go at some point. Along with my admission that I just don't care to try that hard anymore to 'look the look'. A lot of my more professional clothing has already gone away, but even the few things I've kept are probably out of style. They are on the list of things to try on and make decisions on.

It is a work in progress, as I try to figure out what I want my life to look like now.

Thursday, May 01, 2014

My clothes don't fit

Not just size, but nothing feels right.  I'm changing, although not in ways that are obvious.  I realize it by the external evidence.  Nothing feels right when I put it on.  Nothing looks right.  People relate to me differently lately.  I am not interested in some of the things I used to be interested in, and I'm not finding a lot to take the place of those interesting things in my life. I'm not sure what I'll be like on the other side of this, but I wish it would materialize already.

I'm taking the opportunity to continue to unpack.  Just today as I was going through the extra luggage... what?  You don't have extra luggage.  Well, I have a luggage facination, so I have lots.  And inside of some of this luggage, that was packed away in a large plastic tote, were some of the clothes I've vaguely wondered about.  So, now I have piles of more clothes to figure out where to put them away.  Some I need to try on.  The pants, I'm thinking that they were put back for a reason, but darned if I can remember why.  This is why I'm trying to unpack everything and go through it, I tend to stash items inside other items and forget where I put them.

That's what has been going on.  Vague discomfort, my world feeling tilted and trying to not fight it and let the way out suggest itself.  Work is still in a holding pattern.  I tend to walk around there angry as often as not, mostly because I can't get comfortable and make a plan.  No one seems to know what is going on.  So, I'm headed to Las Vegas again next week on my days off.  I need a change in perspective.

Thursday, April 03, 2014

Don't Have To Live Like a Refugee

At some point in my younger life I heard that song, really heard it, and attempted to apply it to my life.  I tend to live in a mess.  Too much stuff for the room I have.  I keep moving into smaller and smaller places as I get rid of the stuff.  So, the level of clutter stays the same.  I hit a tipping point lately.  It is time to clean up.  The fact that my winter neighbors are neat freaks is a part of this.  Like I've heard the Germans and Swiss do, they actually sweep the sidewalk in front of their mobile homes, which I tend to find a bit odd.  However, it does tend to make my place stand out. 

I've started at the front of the mobile home, inside, and am putting away clutter.  It is to the point now that I need to shift everything as I'm running out of 'other' places to put things.  So, today I'll take the large empty cardboard boxes to the dumpster bins back in the corner of the park.  I'd like to recycle them, but they don't fit in my recycle container, and since the containers are emptied automatically by an arm that reaches out from the truck as it stops, there is no allowance for anything outside of the container.  This will allow me to then finish moving the empty large plastic storage containers sitting outside of the storage room behind my carport into the storage room.  Which then lets me take the empty ones on my screened porch and (hopefully) put them inside there as well.  Which makes room on the screened porch.  Which gives me someplace to put some of the stuff sitting around that I unpacked from all those containers.  I'll sweep out the carport and sidewalk someplace in there.  I also hope to clean out the Jeep while I'm at it.  Right.

The trip to Mexico and Dr. Rubio's office went without a hitch.  It was different than I expected.  No judgement either way, just different.  I was nervous about the border crossing, and I need not have been.  Park, walk down a sidewalk and through a one-way gate, and I was in Mexico.  The clinic was right where I was given directions to find it.  I got my teeth cleaned for $30.  I was not a good patient, as I was nervous and edgy and the vibrating(?) metal pick he used didn't help my attitude, rather than the US version with an ultrasonic water pic.  He did what I'd asked the US dentist to do, which is just get what you can cleaned while my nerves allow it.  I'll go back soon and get more done, although this was a big improvement.  The US dentist gave me a look of disgust when I suggested that and I was assured that she would do NOTHING else until I had a complete scaling (which they really need to rename...).  In between these visits was the whole Honduran dental work, so that my have helped.  At any rate, that was the good.  The part I will reserve judgement on is that it was very much a 'clinic' atmosphere in that I was shown in in a timely manner to a chair, my teeth cleaned, and I paid my $30.  I didn't have any real discussion or overview, other than to be told that to have all the x-rays and such to determine if I can get the implant is $150.00 and is in another room of the clinic, presumably with a different doctor.  No sense of on-going relationship (or not).  I went in, got what I came for, paid for it, and left.  No x-rays as part of the checkup, although he did two at my request to check a couple of my crowns.  He showed them to me, and I had to ask if it looked ok.  He shrugged and said yeah.  So, unlike in the US (what few times I've been) where you give them enough information to almost become family, and sign up to give them large chunks of your income for the foreseeable future before even seeing the dentist, here you go in, tell them what you want, they give it to you, you pay, and leave.  Better?  Worse?  I'll have to get used to it.

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Off to Mexico

I'm off to see Dr. Rubio in Algodones, Mexico this morning.  I'm putting off getting ready to go for some reason.  Not too worried as this visit is just for a cleaning and look-see.

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Happy April Fools Day

Just that.  And hopes that reminding you it is April Fools Day will keep you from getting sucked into an April Fools joke.

No joke.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

I think I got lost again

I always mean to update things here. I can't keep up to my self-imposed quality of blog posts so I end up not posting anything. A blog is an interesting thing. I believe it is mostly a good force in my life, so I keep posting. However, it also is a reminder that I'm not organized enough to do it as well as 'everyone else' and so it becomes a chore I put off.

I now have 2 cats, one really an adolescent of 7 mo or so. Bosley has become an adult cat in the few weeks I've had him, filled out and grown up. Rasta is still a kitten, skinny and showing signs that he has been not so well. I'm hoping that now that he is healthy and with good food and attention he will sleek up and his coat will get shiny. So far so good, although mornings it is WWIII here as the cats battle and chase and wrestle. I am by necessity getting to be a better house keeper. Anything not nailed down goes flying when the guys start their antics.

No changes at work, and it is getting more and more difficult. April 1, I keep being told, just hold on till April 1. We are short staffed and the work load hasn't dropped. Even my boss says we are running on duct tape and bailing wire. He grins when he says it. I don't.

I'm in need of getting a move on with doctors and dentists and new glasses. I'm going to call (really, I mean it this time) Dr. Rubio, the dentist in Algodones, when I finish this post. The medical doctors I found a few weeks ago, but then decided they are too far away across town? I'm going to call them and make an appointment as well. Maybe not today, though.

UPDATE:  Made my appointment for next week.

Thursday, March 06, 2014

Where was I...?

Mom left for home yesterday.  I talked to her this morning and most everything went well with the trip.  So, now, where was I before she came to visit?  When I don't get a lot of alone down time whatever can be put aside, is.  Now I'm picking up the pieces.

One of the things I'm doing is getting ready to add to the family.  No, I'm too old for what you are probably thinking.  I'm going to talk to someone about adopting a couple of cats.  Full grown or kittens, don't know yet.  I'm going to try to arrange it so I can get them after work on Monday, when I then have 3 days to stay home with them.  More on that next time.

Some things going on, but nothing worth mentioning.  I was to make a transfer at work, but that has been put off.  A bunch of stuff was going on there this week while I've been off, so I have no idea what I'm walking into tomorrow (or, later tonight).  Guess someone would have called me if any of it was important to me.

Now, off to Petsmart to talk to the nice ladies that run the no-kill adoption center hosted there.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Tour Time

Yesterday Mom and I did a tour of the Verde Valley. In the library here at the park someone left some Arizona Highways magazines and Mom had picked up one on the Verde Valley. I said 'hmmmm, want to go there this week?' and she said sure. When I mentioned leaving at 5am, she paled a bit, but said ok. So we pulled out in the dark at 4:58am yesterday morning. Spoiler alert, no pictures posted. So what's new, right?

Anyway, I headed up I17. Mom mentioned Montezuma's Castle as a place she would like to see. That hadn't been in my plan, but we stopped on the way up to check out the hours. It wasn't open yet, and it was 40 degrees outside. I pondered, and headed on up I17. By the time we got to Flagstaff at around 7,000 ft (more or less) it was 25 degrees and sunny. I was thinking of the almost 80 degrees due in Phoenix that day. Hmmmm. I say that a lot.

We started the tour by driving down Oak Creek Canyon from Flagstaff to Sedona on 89A. It is pretty, but I admit I'm spoiled. Hanging around in the Southeastern US for so many years I take such drives for granted. Or did until I moved to Phoenix. I'm thinking I'll be more impressed with it in the summer when the temperature in Phoenix is 118. I'm sure all of Phoenix will be right there with me as well, which may make it interesting. As it was most of the campgrounds and picnic areas were blocked off.

As we got into Sedona the rocks turned red and there were more buildings. I had come to Sedona last summer and wanted to find the Forest Service office to get some maps. So, we rolled through north Sedona and out 179 almost back to I17. I'm efficient like that. The views at the office were as great as I remembered. Mom was snapping photos and I was snapping photos of her snapping photos. She got a senior pass for $10 (lifetime). I was going to get an annual pass for $80/year but decided to just use her pass on this trip. We asked for suggestions of a place to get breakfast and where the thrift shops are. Having those pinpointed on a map they gave us, we headed back up 179 and had breakfast at the Red Rock Cafe. It was ok, but as most restaurants are here (compared to Tennessee or Honduras) I considered it a bit expensive.

We checked out thrift stores on our way to the Sedona airport. I think Mom bought a small something at one of them. We drove up to the airport and I noted that even at 10am there wasn't any room to park at the pulloff to the vortex. With Mom I wasn't going to hike to the vortex anyway (that's my excuse this time). Mom took obligatory pictures of the view at the overlook while I basked in the sun and just enjoyed the view. Then we went to the actual airport. The landing strip is on top of the mountain. It must be a real trip to land there. Small airplanes only, or helicopters.

We then worked our way on south on 89A, stopping at the McDonalds on our way out of town. Yes, we are heathens, well, I am. The arches are small and are green instead of yellow on the small sign out front. The place was packed and needed to be at least 3 times as large as it was to handle the crowd. I figure even in Sedona, whether they want to admit it or not, McD's has a place to fill. For me it was a large sweet tea. We drove to Cottonwood and I looked around for RV boondockers and saw one small grouping.

The original plan had been to go on the train ride that starts in Clarksdale. I do plan to do that at some point. However, it leaves the station at 1pm and is 4 hours long. While we could have made it to the station in time, it meant that we wouldn't get to Montezuma's Castle. I also weighed the $50/each price tag of the train trip vs. free with Mom's pass at the Castle, and suggested that we just drive to Jerome, Tuzigoot, and head back to see the Castle. Mom was ok with that. She hadn't been too excited about the train ride anyway, which is why when she actually wanted to see the Castle I changed the plan. We went to the Jerome Historical Park and toured the visitor's center at $5/each. Then we drove around Jerome. We didn't stop in town as we weren't hungry and didn't need either antiques or wine. Again, I'm a heathen. Having been to Gatlinburg, TN many times and Mom living around Weston, MO most of her life, there isn't a lot that tourist towns hold for us.

After that it was a drive to Tuzigoot. By this time I had the air conditioning on in the Jeep as it was very sunny. I still used my fleece when walking around outside, but it was a beautiful Arizona day. We used Mom's pass to get to visit the museum in the visitor's center at Tuzigoot. I find this to be an unfriendly place. Can't really put my finger on it, but I felt the same way last time I was there. They won't let you just walk around the visitor's center without paying up. $5/each, or have a pass like Mom did. Mom doesn't walk far easily, and I had already seen the actual ruins. I think the best view is from the road driving up anyway. It may have something to do with the fact that it was really hot when I was there last, and I had already walked all around Jerome and was tired. At any rate, after walking around and reading all the informational displays in the museum we headed out.

It was fun driving through old town Cottonwood on the way back to 89A and then heading back to I17 on 260. We got to Montezuma's Castle around 3pm and used Mom's pass again to gain entrance. This place seems much more friendly It was an enjoyable walk around looking at the cliff dwellings from the ground below and sitting on the benches. A nice ending to the tour. On the way home we stopped at Rock Springs. Mom just got some pie while I had a cup of their corn chowder. The chowder was good. Our waitress was having a bad day and Mom ended up with regular peach pie instead of peach crumb. She even put a packet of sugar on it as it wasn't sweet enough for her. As I said, we are heathens. My Jack Daniels pecan pie ended up being regular pecan, which I know because I had the JD pecan pie last time. I decided was good enough that we didn't bother telling the waitress. She had also messed up the pie order of another table and was making amends to them.

Mom had her return ticket for March 5, so we have time for a couple of trips yet. I'm thinking of driving up to Payson for lunch next week.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014


No, Mom and I haven't killed each other, I just haven't felt like writing.  We are doing fine.  I took her to Tortilla Flats for lunch last week.  The food was good and she enjoyed the drive.  Yes, DD, they still have prickly pear ice cream.  Still didn't try it as again I was stuffed from my meal.  Some day I'll drive out there and just get the ice cream.  A few days ago we went to Boyce Thompson State Park, and I bought a season pass.  So far it is my favorite place to visit as they have trees there and lots and lots of interesting plants.  Mom and I each bought 4 small cactus plants to grow.  Mom has since found yet another type growing in front of some of my neighbor's places and will try to talk them out of a start of it.  They actually offered when they saw she liked it, but she was too busy looking at it to hear.

Another neighbor had recommended the Ranch Market for produce.  Actually, they were recommending Midwest Meats as a great place to eat (has a restaurant as well as a bakery and butcher shop) and mentioned that the Lutheran Thrift Shop and Ranch Market were in the same area.  Turtle Lady and Bill and I ate at the restaurant, and it is great.  I went back to the produce market a couple of weeks ago and was disappointed.   Mostly because it was so crowded at the time.  I did get a couple of yams to start my foray into cooking again.  I mean, what can go wrong with a couple of yams, right?  So they have sat there and waited patiently (mocking me) in the fridge since then.  Mom mentioned them, slightly puzzled why I would have real (as opposed to canned) yams, but dropped it when I just shrugged.  This morning I was inspired to DO SOMETHING with the darn things.  So, I peeled them (do you usually peel them?) and sliced them into the nice baking dish the casino gave me earlier this month.  They do strange things like that at the casinos here, give random gifts and we all stand in line for up to a hour to get this free thing that we wouldn't spend $30 for at Walmart.  But, I digress.  I put several glugs of Avocado Oil over them as I chopped them into bite size pieces.  The oil was something that looked interesting at Costco when Turtle Lady and I went there.  I mean, I was buying a large tub of Coconut Oil, which I have no idea what to do with, so what is another bottle of oil?  A young oriental guy in line behind me at checkout looked at me quizzically and asked me what does one do with Avocado Oil?  I said it has a high smoke temperature so it's good to fry stuff in.  I hope it is, anyway.  But again, I digress.  So, I did all this while Mom is still asleep so I didn't have to answer similar questions.  Who knows what will come out of the 350* oven in a little over an hour.  Hopefully something I can make soup with if nothing else.  I have the bag of quinoa to use up as well, because, well everyone seems to say how great it is.  Once I figure out how to use it I'm sure I'll be hooked as well.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Quick picture

This is me, near Jerome, AZ several weeks ago. Just a picture to start to catch up. It is a shock to me to see how I look now, vs. how I looked just a few years ago. I'm also almost ready to do something about the braid. Not sure what yet. The braid was what I did to take care of my hair getting everywhere and getting tangled up so it was difficult to brush. A diet and a new hair do. They are on the list.

Nothing is wrong

When folks start commenting and emailing to see if I'm ok I know it's time to do a post. I'm fine, life just got a little busy. Mom arrives on Monday. I spent the past 2 weeks cleaning and clearing. Then I spent 3 days in Vegas again. I think I'm about done with Vegas for awhile. It has been fun, but I'm ready to try other things. This is good as Mom doesn't gamble much. I'm at work, so no pictures right now. I kept thinking I'd catch up with the pictures, but that didn't happen. Oh, well.

Saturday, January 04, 2014

365 - 4

Awhile back I mentioned a good Greek restaurant I go to sometimes. This is it, Niros Gyros.  I've liked everything I've had here.  It is on the expensive side to eat there every day.  Now the hours I'm working don't jive with eating there much at all.  If you are down I-10 near Elliott Rd., this is at 48th (I think) and Elliott, west of I-10 and a couple of stoplights.

Friday, January 03, 2014

365 - 3 Work in Progress

This is the sweater I'm working on now.  I had 3 times this much done, but I realized it was way too big, so I ripped back to the beginning.  I like it much better this time.  It is a self striping yarn, an acrylic called mosaic.

I am out of my original ideas for pictures now, so I'll have to get a bit more creative.

Thursday, January 02, 2014

365 - 2

This is the sweater I started while I was in Honduras and finished a few months ago.  I learned to knit Continental style (holding the yarn in the left hand while knitting) while making this, transitioning from 40 years of the 'other' style of holding the yarn in my right hand and wrapping it around each time.  The quality suffered for awhile until the new way became natural to me.  This was an easy sweater to learn on as there are only knit stitches in the entire thing.

365 - 1

This is the front of my mobile home. I like it. Yes, the red flowers are artificial. I'll replace them with some cactus soon. It's on the ever expanding 'list'.  These pictures are to get me out of my rut of not posting pictures.  The plan is to get better at this as I go along.

The beat goes on

I've already fallen behind on one resolution. That is to take (and post!) a picture every day. Remembered when I got up this morning that I didn't do it yesterday. So, I owe you guys 2 today. I already know what I want to take, and the camera is now out on the counter waiting for daylight.

 I am in the process of moving my office to the living room. Turtle Lady and Bill cleared out a few things that I was having trouble doing with my back, and also provided a trial run for how the place is set up when I have company. Since Mom is due in a little under 3 weeks I decided that I need the computer in the living room and the guest(s) in the extra bedroom. With my odd hours it makes it easier, I hope, for all involved if we can each have run of the kitchen and living room while the other is sleeping. One thing I'll have to work on is that I discovered that the extra bedroom gets cold if the door is closed, so maybe Mom will be happy to just have the door cracked. We'll work it out when she gets here.

I will have updates on my works in progress later as that is one of the photos I want to take. I wanted to get this post out there as I started a post yesterday and got distracted and ended up just trashing it as I didn't take time to finish it.