Sunday, November 30, 2014

The view from our bedroom window (that desperately needs to be cleaned !)

Whew. Finally caught up. Sorry I got so far behind – I meant to take some photos, wanted to add more on a couple entries… next thing I know, I haven’t posted in nearly a month, and so much has happened !

Beloved Hubby got the last of the dead tree down, and the neighbor family darn near cleaned the yard for us, they claimed almost all the branches and limbs, filling two trucks. They may be back for the rest, but I don’t want to expect them to do more. So nice of them to help us out so much already !

Still in the ‘internet is magic’ phase you get in when you’ve had to do without for a short eternity. We have so many TV channels, but some may be from a weekend promo, and I really don’t have time for television anyway. Kitchen’s a disaster. But the dishwasher works ! (happy sigh) Dishwasher…..

We’re kind of in that half-moved phase, where half your stuff is at your new place, and there’s lots of room and no clutter… but you still have a ton of junk to move yet. Most of it you really do want, but it’s nice to have so much space ! MIL texted Beloved today, asking when they can start showing the house… I’m not even gonna go there, I’m gonna take a long detour around it and just let it be a reminder of why I’m so flippin’ happy here. I figured it’d take a week of Emmy-car hauls to get most of the small stuff transported, and if it goes faster, yay. I’m gonna be doing most of it with only Dearest Son helping – Beloved’s busting butt already to pay for all this – so I’m not gonna hurt m’self to finish a day earlier. Besides, I saw their Garpartment, unless they started cleaning with a shovel and a hose since yesterday, they’re no more ready to show the house (not going there, not going there) than we are ready to have overnight guests here.

Just think… in a few more days, all my sewing stuff will be in one place again, and I can actually make something ! I really can’t wait. As it is now, my very specific combined power cord / foot pedal is at ThatPit, and my sewing machine KJ is here. Not to mention all my fabrics and craft crap. And all my dolls ! We mostly focused on getting Dearest’s stuff first, and Beloved’s tools when this first got going – we can get my stuff this week.

I love our new place ! 

Saturday, November 29, 2014

And, as you can see, we finally got our internet back !

Oh, Laws, what a day ! We were up early to get the modem and such in anticipation of having our internet and new TV service installed… you already know where this is going, don’t ‘cha ? We got two texts from AT&T, and about 11am, saw the familiar van go by. I figured it missed us, but when it didn’t come back a few minutes later, went back inside. Maybe the technician had another appointment – that’d make sense because I didn’t get the pre-visit tech phonecall yet.

A few minutes later, the van came back… and used the across-the-street neighbor’s driveway to turn around. It then vanished for a second time, and two minutes later I got another text, saying my tech had been unable to complete the install, please call for another appointment.

Oh, (expletive string deleted), no. I was soon on the line asking why I had to reschedule when tech never got out of the van. Heck, no, there was no note left, unless he attached it with a blow gun or he squirted himself and the note out of his door lock, ‘cause he never got out of the very well-marked company van, and there was no note out there. Twenty minutes later, I played the ‘disabled veteran on daily Wi-Fi to the VA’ card, something I really and truly hate doing, ‘cause it shouldn’t make a difference who or what I am – unless the tech is ill or broken down, he or she should keep their made-two-weeks-ago appointment. If he/she hates the job that much, maybe someone else should be doing it. A supervisor took over after I got several excuses, most were precisely that since we can see everything from the front room, where we all were at the time, waiting for the (deleted). I also got ‘we talked to the tech’ and ‘we can’t reach the tech to get him back out there’ during the same call, so draw your own logical conclusions.

In the end, it took about two hours, but AT&T really pulled through for me. They got another tech to come out for us a little over another hour later, and this guy was a doll. He even called ! We were so happy we tipped him. He didn’t even flinch when Beloved Hubby started cutting down the dead tree in the front yard. People were thanking us from their cars, saying the dead tree had needed to come down for at least a year now. Good news from one truck - the driver asked if he and a couple relatives could haul away the big limbs for us, probably for firewood, tomorrow. Help yourself, all you can haul. Yaaay !

Friday, November 28, 2014

Slowly but surely, NewPlace becomes OurPlace. Soon, it'll be the latest Chez Insanity !

We had a long shopping list for the Home Improvement stores today. Another coupling for the gas cooktop, pipes to replace the under-sink garbage disposal, a new kitchen faucet, a door for Dearest Son’s bedroom, and a bunch of other stuff. Beloved Hubby was busy ! But we now have a working gas cooktop, a nice high-bend sprayer faucet, fast-draining sinks, and a doorknob-free door upstairs. Dearest was so happy we got his door first, he counted it as an early Christmas gift !

We also bought some stuff not on the plan. Namely a great electric griddle on an awesome sale – I can cook at least three pancakes at a time on it. Guess what we’re having for breakfast tomorrow ! We also bought a box of bright colored lights and a box of light-up icicles. We’ve never hung lights outside before, as a family. Heck, most years, it’s noteworthy that we put up a small tree. But Beloved installed both boxes around the porch tonight. We’re the first and so far only family with lights up on our street. They’re so beautiful, we both want more. Too bad we’re already well over budget for this week. Maybe next week !

We also got another load of big stuff, but let the modem stay at ThisPit one more night. We’ll have to go back early tomorrow for it, but we wanted M&FIL to have one more evening of Netflix and internet. Wish we could keep paying for both places, but we just can’t afford it, and we don’t have an extra modem.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

I hope your tummy is happy !

Happy Thanksgiving ! Hope you dined well and are well-stocked with leftovers you love. We did indeed celebrate the day at NewPlace, with ham, baked potatoes, green beans, and the traditional leftover baked beans. Delicious ! We watched BASEketball and Bad Santa on DVD and moved another load down as a convoy. We’re about halfway done. Most of the larger stuff is moved, save for the bikes and bookcases, and the fridge is in place – we hope to buy what we need for the ice maker and water dispenser tomorrow.

Learned quite a bit at our new place. The cheep plastic kitchen faucet – I know it’s cheep, we bought the same one for ThisPit – would pop off every time I turned on the water, giving me a sudden single-fountain show and drenching my shirt at the same time. Beloved Hubby reinstalled it twice, and it was still like a cheap version of the Fountains of Bellagio show. Dearest Son thought it was hilarious. We hope to replace that tomorrow, as well. Under-sink garbage disposal is a lost cause, so we’re gonna yank that out and replace it with regular pipes and a basket type strainer.

We also discovered that we’d left the power cord to the TV at ThisPit. However, I had grabbed the embroidery sewing machine on the last round – could that work ? Yes ! So now we know that my sewing machine cord can pull double duty for the TV. I just hope we don’t have to test it again any time soon !

We’re also sleeping here tonight, and from now on. We got our beds, last thing. We have sooo much stuff still there, it’ll take us all next week, one Emmy-car load at a time, and maybe one more big-stuff truck load, to get it all. We barely have any clothes here, although we did move all of Dearest’s.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Most of the dollies I pay for, I keep ! But not this one.

Busy day. Drove M&FIL to their doctor’s appointments, then rented the appliance dolly on the way back to ThisPit. Don’t have to turn it in ‘til Friday morning. Had to drive really slow with it sticking out the back of Emmy-car’s trunk, but the Ya’ll-Haul place is only six blocks away. And now I know where Emmy’s ‘hazard flashers’ button is. I could have walked it back, I wouldn’t even have to cross the street. But Beloved Hubby insisted.

My air supply route guy came by and replaced the cylinders I’ve used. Glad that happened before we moved ! Then it was time to pick up the ILs and drive them to the pharmacy. While this may or may not be the last time I do that, it’s always bugged me. I have no problem driving them, but I always have to wait about 20 minutes at the pharmacy – and the very next day, they get more delivered, from the same pharmacy ! I’ve never understood the necessity of the same-day visit, especially when MIL says they usually have several days’ supply in case their next appointment is scheduled a bit late. Ah, well. Won’t be an issue much longer. Of course, today’s wait was about 40 minutes – insurance issues and pre-holiday busy.

And their moving boxes got delivered today. I don’t know why they ordered a short ton of boxes, they have no idea where they’re going or when. They haven’t decided yet if they’re gonna stay in this state or move to an ‘it’s legal there’ state. Meanwhile, we’re moving the stuff that doesn’t need to be packed, ‘cause we haven’t bought boxes, and are trying to avoid doing so. Tryin’ to keep it on the cheap, ya know. Heck, most of our stuff’s either already boxed, like my doll stuff and fabrics, doesn’t need a box, like my printer, or can be bagged, like clothes. Even our groceries and pots and pans are being moved in paper grocery sacks saved over the months from purchases down the street. Some things, like my VA HealthCheck equipment and Beloved’s monitor, we still have the boxes for, so we’ll just repack ‘em. We’re gonna need to box the books and DVDs, but I’m hoping to move those a couple boxes at a time, and recycle the boxes ‘til they fall apart. Cheap and environmentally sound !

The two electric space heaters we bought came in boxes perfect for stand-up transport of all my MH and Barbie-scale dolls. I saved those as soon as they were emptied !

Got all the dishes I could find done, so we could move ‘em nice and clean to NewPlace tomorrow, just in time for the best Thanksgiving ever. We’re gonna have ham, baked potatoes, green beans, and a cake. It’ll be so nice to have an oven again, I’m gonna use the heck out of it !

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The move continues... and will continue to continue for at least another two weeks or so.

Since I still felt weak and weary even after a great night’s sleep, I cheated a bit and told Dearest Son to fill up Emmy-car with whatever he was ready to move today. I figured that’d give me time for a more leisurely breakfast, and I could fill in any empty spots with either doll or sewing stuff. Turned out, only one box of Barbie clothes in the whole car was mine, the rest was his ! About the only things left here are his computers, his desks, and some drawing stuff.

I can’t help but think Beloved Hubby is being a bit over-optimistic about us being moved in by Saturday. We might be sleeping there Friday night, but we will be far from having all our stuff moved, much less placed, organized, and ready to live there. Heck, we still haven’t decided about the fridge situation, and that’s gonna have to be solved before Thursday. I had to pick up some of yesterday’s tasks left undone, but even with all day, I can make two car-loads of stuff, possibly three, and it’s not a lot. Heck, when we moved here, it took six big-truck loads, and we didn’t have a quarter of the tools we have now, and you know Dearest and I have certainly added to our own stashes since then.

But we’ll do what we can, and even one box of Lego and one crate of fabric moved is one less he has to help move later. I wanna do as much as we can, because Beloved really is busting his butt to fund all this.

After a lunch special – my fave fried chicken place in NewCity offers a two-piece and biscuit for $1.49, Tuesdays only – we ran the copper left behind in the garage to the recycler’s. Six bucks cash, ca-ching ! I also toured their used appliance section. They have lots of refrigerators and even pairs of front-loading washer / dryers. Of course, the more conventional kind are cheaper…

Next, we hit the dollar DVD pawn shop – and spent six bucks, oddly enough. Got Apollo 13, Jonah Hex, 28 Days, Man of the Year, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, and the first season of Robot Chicken. I really should have paid $5. for Robot, but it rang up as a single DVD, so that’s all they charged me. And I found out they have used Wiis for just $30. True, they only have a 24-hour guarantee, but we need to replace ours, now that I can actually use Wii Fit again… I really want to ! Just wondering, I looked up the warrantee GameHalt offers for its used/reconditioned Wii units - $70., and 7 days. I think I’ll take the risk with the pawn shop.

We also stopped off at Aldi’s on the way back to ThisPit for our Thanksgiving ham. I was surprised they even still had some, they were super-busy. Scored that, a nice stalk of celery (59¢), a ten-pound sack of Russet potatoes ($1.29), and a sale sack of 40 house-brand pizza rolls for Dearest ($1.25).

And, great news ! MIL says we can have either fridge, most of the places they’re looking to move into include all appliances – and they still have a full fridge and range just in case. Yaaay ! Beloved says we’ll move it Thursday. So I get to rent an appliance dolly tomorrow. Wish me luck. 

Monday, November 24, 2014

We have gas !

The next big step in abandoning ThisPit  for NewPlace was successfully accomplished today – we have our gas turned on, and have heat and hot water ! It was the usual ‘he’ll be there between 8am and noon, someone has to be there or we charge for the cancelled visit (although we don’t charge for a met one) and  you go to the end of the line for a new appointment’ jazz – you know I was there ten minutes early. I had Emmy-car packed fulla stuff to move and a list of stuff to do as long as your arm… and then I had another of those awful stomach-aches. About all I could do was rest, try to relax on the sofa, and wait. Called CityOf – trash pick-up is on Wednesdays (finally, I can get the previous tenant’s trash picked up !) and ordered a second roll-can. We’re gonna need it.

By 10am, I figured if the tech wasn’t there by 11, he wasn’t coming, and focused on being well enough to drive back. But there S. was, at 10:55, and we were done at 11:15. Yaaay ! He had to bleed the lines of air a bit, but he said it all looked good as he inspected Beloved Hubby’s water heater install and the furnace. Much as I wanted to, I didn’t turn the heat on, the ducts were fleece-thick with lint and needed to be cleaned first. But I heard it activate, and had hopes of heat later.

Needless to say, nothing got done past that, although I did manage to unload the car before I took ill. Fell asleep for two hours and felt better, but still very tired. While he didn’t have a stomach issue, Beloved was also quite weary, but I knew he’d want to check things out at NewPlace, no matter how late he got home. So, after a quick dinner, we were off. I helped clean the vents, and we turned on the thermostat. Heat ! How thrilling ! Water heater works, too. Beloved still has to run a line to the cooktop, but that’ll happen soon.

So now, it’s just a matter of getting our stuff moved and doing whatever work we can in between stuff-hauling, but he anticipates having Thanksgiving there, and sleeping there Saturday, if not before. I am beyond thrilled. Saw three mated pairs of cardinals in the backyard while I was waiting – I have *got* to get a bird feeder out there ! 

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Customer Appreciation Day at Dollar Tree - not as busy as you might have thought.

Another fun day at NewPlace. We slept in first, though, and while Beloved Hubby hit Home Despot for necessary supplies, I made cheese biscuits for breakfast. I’d been wanting some for a while.

Got a lot cleaned up, and helped install the front door we took off yesterday onto the side of the garage – the old door that was there was so useless and warped, it was held closed by a large rock. As the old front door was solid, Beloved just power-sawed it to the right size, carved out the new hinge spaces, and poof. Another ‘new’ door. No more rocks – and we already had the key to this one ! For the first time since we signed the lease, NewPlace is truly locked up and secure.

He also found the old chainsaw stored at ThisPit and tested it out today. Works great ! That’s a huge relief, as we’d have had to rent one soon to remove the dead tree in the front yard. Previous tenants got a notice about it, and I’ll call tomorrow and ask if we can get an extension, since we’re still moving in.

We also moved the very nice sofa left behind from the garage to the living room. It’s a great sofa, too – somebody somewhere once paid big bux for it. I think the reason it was in the garage was because the previous tenants couldn’t get it inside. Beloved and Dearest Son had to play it and the doorways like a 3D version of Tetris to get it in, and that was after taking the legs off.

He also removed the old electric cooktop and put our gas one in. He’ll run the gas line to it once the gas is on. I’m so thrilled we get to keep it ! Had to clean the heck out of the counter first, and still have to clean the oven. I know what it’s like to have to move in a hurry, but this poor place was beyond trashed.

Not sure what we’re doing about a fridge. NewPlace doesn’t come with one, so we have to decide soon – buy a brand new or a new-to-us one, or ask the ILs if we can have the one here. They have a fridge in their kitchen, one Beloved got from a remodel, but we have the newer one in ours. Remember the one I had to clean for four hours and defrost when we moved in here ? That one. I’m kind of hoping they’ll agree to let us have or buy this one, but if not, nearly every one at Home Despot is quite nice, and I know the exact locations of three second-hand appliance stores in NewCity. I am so nearly delirious with the idea of no more ‘mystery’ food disappearances that I honestly don’t care which fridge we end up with ! I just hate spending money if we don’t have to – Beloved works so hard to take care of everyone.

We even got to go to Dollar Tree for some NewPlace things – on Customer Appreciation Day, no less. Printed out the coupon from the website and got 10% off our little spree. Yeah, it sounds kind of silly to go to a sale at DTree, but I’d rather save a dime than hope to find one in the parking lot – or ask Beloved to earn another one ! As it was, we saved nearly $3., which isn’t too bad. Kind of a ‘buy 27, get 3 free’ sale.

Beloved still says we’ll be having Thanksgiving at NewPlace and will be moving in over next weekend. I’m so excited !

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Stuff and Nonsense : The Director's Cut

While it rained all day, and we had to get to NewPlace in the middle of University Football Game Day traffic insanity, it was a really nice day. The gas water heater is installed, in anticipation of Monday, and we put in the ‘new’ front door. I say ‘new’ because it’s actually a door rescued from a discard pile at one of Beloved Hubby’s job sites – we actually had three ! Put one in at ThisPit, there’s one at NewPlace now, and we have a spare. The ‘new’ door replaces a solid wood door installed when the house was built in 1968, and is mostly window in the middle. Lets in some much needed light in the entranceway.

I also found the source of an enduring odor – previous tenants not only left a ton of trash in the garage, they left some, including two Mal-Wart sacks of sifted cat box, in the kitchen and laundry area. Whew ! I’m hoping that improves the air quality of NewPlace quickly. I also found a few religious books and two on AA I’ll donate on my next run.

Checked the mail, and we had a 10% off coupon to a pawn shop down the street. So we went, and Beloved Hubby found a tool he’s been wanting, for about 1/5 the new price, still in the box ! He’s thrilled, ‘cause it works great. I’m happy ‘cause he is, and we saved so much. They also sell DVDs for 99¢, and buy them back for 50¢ - almost as cheap as the Library ! I got the first season of M*A*S*H for $5. (TV show seasons are five bucks, still not a bad deal at all !), plus Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince and Airheads for Dearest Son, BASEketball for me, and the Too Cool For School Collection, a dozen low-budget 80s comedies, mostly for Weekend Pass. Back in my Army days, a friend had made me a VHS copy of that from his laserdisc, and I’ve seen it dozens of times. Haven’t seen it since the 90s, though, so it’ll be fun to watch it again. Plus, I have Tomboy, Coach, CaveGirl, The Van, Hunk, or any of the rest for kicks. When I have enough time to be bored ! Cashier told me they get new movies every Monday, so shop early ! I got the discount, so all that DVD fun was only a little over eight bucks. Sweet. Dearest can’t wait for movie time tomorrow – if we’re not at NewPlace all day.

I can also tell you that the free-with-coupon AAA batteries I got from Harbor Freight work great ! Even if they’re not alkaline, just ‘heavy duty’, they lit up my long-dead fold-up OttLite just fine. Beloved bought the small bandsaw he’s wanted on sale and with a 20% off coupon, and got a 20 L.E.D. palm-sized light with another freebie coupon. Bonus – by doing that bit of shopping, we avoided most of the end-of-game traffic going back. One family gave each of their five kids a coupon and had all of ‘em run through the register. Kinda chintzy to use kids, in my opinion. Anyone under 18 isn’t really a tool store customer. But, it’s not my issue.

We also knew there was no way we could get near our favorite gyro restaurant – it’s on campus – so we tried another gyro place here. And it was delicious ! Thoroughly enjoyed every bite. Hope we get to go back again.

Less delicious but lots of fun was supper. We were all tired and wet and a bit growly and more than a bit sleepy, so it was soup and sandwiches. Beloved really wanted a grilled cheese, but we’d already taken the gas cooktop to NewPlace – how can you make grilled cheese in a toaster, microwave, or toaster oven ? It didn’t take me long to find instructions on how to use a toaster oven for that, and they came out great. Even better, I can make four, maybe five, at once ! Set it to bake at 425°, put one slice of bread butter side down on a cookie sheet-type rack. Lay down the cheese on top of the bread, then top with another slice of buttered bread, butter side up. Make as many sandwiches as you want or as will fit. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes, depending on how toasty you like it, then flip and bake for another four to six. They came out nice and crispy on the outside, not soggy in the middle, but the cheese was the lava-like consistency my guys like. I may do it that way from now on ! It’s probably obvious to everyone else, but to me, this is awesome !

Just a fun thing I saw in an ad – did you know there’s a Frozen themed waffle iron ? Oh, my, yes. You too can soon be feasting on Olaf-shaped waffles in three pieces, so you can impale him yourself … on your fork ! Best picture I could find, although it’s also sold at Kohl’s and Bed, Bath, and Beyond.  Twenny five bucks or so. Now, if it was Elsa shaped… I could probably tell you how well it works already ! (grin) For now, though, I’m content with my frozen waffles not being, well, Frozen. 

Friday, November 21, 2014

Stuff and Nonsense : 'A Christmas Story' tie-in

Met my primary care physician at the VA today – she’s awesome ! But massively over-booked. She was juggling me and another appointment plus a walk-in, the hour I was there, and she was looking forward to catching everybody up over lunch. If you think I was even gonna complain about things running an hour late, well, you don’t know how great my new doctor is. I’d have gladly waited longer.

I left way early to allow for rush-hour traffic and VA parking. Seriously, parking’s a huge mess over there. Cars cruised the lots not looking for spaces, but waiting for someone to pull away. There was a truck with a camper shell there yesterday and again today – I think someone’s living in it – that was pulled up too far, so it was taking its spot and half of another. Since I couldn’t find a spot at all, and Emmy-car is fairly small, we took up the remaining half. Both days. I just hoped to not get a ticket, but I really didn’t have an option. Just wish the  camper-owner would learn to park better. As an added snerk, when I pulled away yesterday, a huge Land Rover claimed the spot. And I thought Emmy’s tail was sticking out a bit !

I’m probably gonna lose my oxygen service. I’m too healthy ! They tested my air retention after doing two walking laps around the clinic and up two flights of stairs, and my oxygen levels actually increased ! But if I need it again this summer, she’s aware of the situation. As it stands now, I’m still on the tube. On the plus side, my next ‘jump up in the stirrups’ exam isn’t ‘til 2019 !

I’ve been feeling bad for Dearest Son, being left mostly alone in FIL’s rare care while I’m gone, and with two more appointments with utilities at NewPlace next week, I’ve been trying to make it up to him, with lunches and special things just for us. Much as I’d love to take him to Dollar Tree several times a week, even that and the thrifts get expensive, so I’ve been thinking up fun alternatives. This afternoon, it was huge bowls of buttery popcorn and our Special Edition  A Christmas Story DVD. Tomorrow or Sunday, we’re making cookies. I’m thinking Monday, after the gas is activated, we’ll go look at Christmas trees, pick out a few to recommend to Beloved Hubby. After years of having too many trees – seemed like every place we moved into had at least one (several times there were two or three in attics and closets) left behind – we don’t have one at all, and even holiday-shrugging Beloved wants one this year.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Stuff and Nonsense 3 : The Search for a Parking Spot at the VA

Diabetes seminar at the VA went well – three down, one to go. If we followed the standard schedule, our last one would be on Christmas Day ! Luckily, our leader T. isn’t going that route – he’s planning on being out of town anyway. Don’t envy the six-hour drive he has for Thanksgiving, either. And the English muffins were delicious !

Lunch with Dearest Son was a bit of a rip-off. For some reason, at 11:55am, there were all of three options (two hot dogs and a jalapeno sausage) and cooking any more of the others would take a half hour. I guess that microwave doesn’t work. So we chose the hot dogs, plus the chips and sodas that are part of the promotion, only to get billed 35c more. Why ? For whatever reason, Funyuns don’t count as bagged chips – although Fritos and Chee-tos do. As when I asked about cheddar wursts being added to the grill, the cashier just shrugged. See if we bother Circle K again. 7-11 may be a bit more pricey, but they don’t play games, and they actually have food available. What I didn’t get was that the store was empty, save for us, and the cashier didn’t even bother to put more on, and it was prime lunch time. Guess she really wanted to sell that jalapeno dog first.

After lunch – and finally catching up with the dishes ! - I spent a good chunk of time on hold with AT&T. Last weekend, they finally sent us an offer that made us reconsider cable TV. $30./month for 140 channels (maybe 15 of which we’ll watch !), plus free DVRs and a $150. Visa card – and  a bonus $50. card for signing up online. Beloved Hubby was ready to go for it, but there was just one problem. How could we sign up online and have it go to NewPlace, and not ThisPit ? And could they install both cable and move our internet service on the same day ?

So I called. Turned out, the rep I spoke with was able to do all that for me, and yes, the same tech could take care of it all in one visit. While we would get the Visa card, the 140 channels for $30., and two DVRs, they couldn’t give us the bonus $50. – but they would waive the $99. service fee I was quoted last week for the internet-only transfer. We’re actually $50. ahead ! Now that’s taken care of, and quite well ! I confess, I liked ION and the music channels when the VA had cable…

I get to meet my new primary care provider at the VA tomorrow. At least I’m getting more confident about driving in morning rush-hour traffic ! I’ll do just about anything to avoid ‘drive home’ time – it’s twice as bad. 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Stuff and Nonsense II : Electric Bugaboo

Since the rest of the week is busy with medical appointments, I figured I’d best get as much done as possible today. Got another load of dishes done, but cooked three meals, so I’m not quite caught up yet. Beloved Hubby really enjoyed his spaghetti, so it’s worth it.

However, I evidently spoke too soon about tummy aches, ‘cause I had a whopper today. And I didn’t even eat the noodles ! Nearly identical to the one that had Beloved driving me to the VA ER last month, just not as lengthy, thank Everything. Took a while, but I did everything they told me to, gave m’self a nice soft tummy massage, relaxed, tried to read, lay down. It either put me to sleep or I stopped hurting enough to rest, because I crashed for almost two hours, and when I woke up, no tummy ache.

Luckily, we’d already done the grocery shopping before I took ill. Tomorrow’s Taco Night, using another of the dinner kits I got on markdown. Trying to use those before they expire, too ! Took FIL along – I’m not sure how, but they broke another coffee maker. I’ve given them three, and all three are broken. I’ve never broken a coffee maker, just a single carafe, during a move, and I mostly buy mine used. I actually have given all mine away long before they broke, so I don’t know how they break. I was gonna tell him we have a spare two-cup one at NewPlace, but he’d already bought a ten-cup maker from the drug store next to the grocery. Oh, well. If they use one that much, I doubt a two-cup would have worked for them anyway.

Stuck to just what we needed, and a few extras, and still spent $50. I have no idea what FIL spent – nunnmybusiness – but I’m glad I didn’t need Emmy-car’s trunk space. He easily had twice the bags we did, and I bought a 16lb sack of Meow Mix ! Still don’t know how they can eat all that sweet stuff, and I’m the diabetic around here…  but I’m not bitter, not one bite.. I mean, bit. Didn’t win anything in the contest within the cat food bag, but I scored a dollar-off coupon. Sweet !

So I took it easy tonight, and let the dishes sit ‘til tomorrow. I’m sure there’ll be plenty of time after the VA and taking Dearest Son out to lunch to get to them. Gonna crash early ‘cause I get to fight traffic in the morning. Wish me luck ! 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Stuff and nonsense.

Another busy day. Took the last of the known laundry – I’m sure there’s pockets of Dearest Son and Beloved Hubby clothes hiding in numerous isolated spots, especially socks – to the Laundromat this morning, and mostly filled a five-loader. Found a quarter in a dryer. It was so refreshing to see those overflowing laundry baskets end the day as empty ones once it was all put away. Finally !

Once back, I came to the cold realization that, if I wanted lunch, I’d have to buy it (using my fun funds) or cook it. And if I wanted to save my selfish cash and cook, I had to clean most of the kitchen and – ugh ! – wash a ton of dishes. Or at least a half-ton. So I dug through what we had and found two pouch mixes, one for chicken flavored rice, another for Asian-style noodles, that had expired two weeks prior. Well, I like living on the edge ! It wasn’t that long before I had enough clean to cook and eat from, and Dearest and I feasted on the rice. While he loves noodles, they more or less have to be egg noodles or ramen – pouch noodles often get a doubtful glare. He hasn’t noticed the difference in our old spaghetti and the wheat stuff, or that’d be disdained as well. Paired with make-your-own ham sandwiches, it was a neat treat, and no tummy-aches. I’ll probably have the noodles Friday.

There’s an actually decent, if not particularly attractive, solid wood dining area table at NewPlace, just no chairs. So we bought the chairs left over from the IL’s yard sale. They’re actually nice chairs, quite comfortable, so I moved them inside where they won’t have to absorb any more weather, and placed a spare plank of wood on one. Now I have a temporary place for the toaster ! Which is good, ‘cause when we go grocery shopping tomorrow, I am sooo treating m’self to some English muffins ! While those are nearly three bucks in the bread aisle, there’s a house brand in with the refrigerated bagels for 99c. I really, really miss the Hostess bread thrift outlets…

Monday, November 17, 2014

I got the keys to NewPlace !

Most of the snow is already gone. There were some icy patches on the roads under thick tree growth, but otherwise, they were clear. Got to see a still-green-leafed oak tree completely covered in snow at the City offices. While I successfully activated CityOf utilities, I’ve got to call them back to find out when our trash pick-up day is. I forgot to ask. We found a nice office chair curbside down the street, so Beloved Hubby got a new mesh back seat with lumbar support and slightly chewed armrests. May stitch up some covers for him…

Of course, Dearest Son and I visited the NewPlace while we were in the area ! The electricity was on, but gas wasn’t, so it was a bit cold. Called the gas co., and was told that no, it wasn’t going to be turned on 24 to 48 hours after our call last Wednesday, we had to make an appointment. Also, since my account was more than 18 months old, we did have to fork over a deposit, no matter what the previous agent said. Grrrr… so, anyway, I have to be back at NewPlace next Monday at 8am to get that activated. (sigh)

Meanwhile, Dearest and I went through all the left-behind items and picked out stuff to keep and junk to donate. Kept a bunch of paper and a neat tote bag, a purse, some books, and several coloring books. He tested the monitor found in the garage, and it works ! Called Beloved Hubby to appraise him of the latest developments, he told me he was already finished with work for the day, so if we could hang out there a bit, he’d meet us.

I was happy for that but I hadn’t planned on being there that long, and didn’t bring my afternoon meds. Plus, Dearest and I were hungry. We agreed to run up to Dollar Tree – within walking distance to NewPlace ! – pick up snacks, then I’d run back to ThisPit, take my meds, and come back. Since I already had the donations bagged up, and we drove right past a donation kiosk, we took care of that too. Three bags of stuff, mostly unworn kids’ shoes, already out of our hair. I darn near busted my own butt when I slipped on some ice right in front of the kiosk. No good deed…

We had some chilly fun together, planning what would go where, and discussing flooring options and such. Without the gas, he could only take out the old water heater, but at least that’s done. And I know right where the fireplace is going !

Dinner at Taco Bueno - so good, if not exactly visually appealing. And they forgot our chips. It’s funny, because I’ve been getting ‘Tamales in X days !!1!’ emails from them for two weeks, with their addition to the menu scheduled for Friday. But the franchise near NewPlace had ‘em today ! Delicious, but two out of three of mine were broken on the plate, and the sides looked as slopped on as school cafeteria food. Hate to say it, but the store here is a bit better about this. Hope we just caught them on an off day.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Sweetness in the snow...

The sweetest thing happened today – completely unexpected ! It’s snowing (that was expected !) and it’s the usual mesmerizing total beauty of the first snowfall of the holiday season, as the snow from the beginning of 2014 has long since been forgotten, and with the wild winds we have year-round, it’s always like being inside a just-shaken snow globe. It didn’t start ‘til this afternoon, so we had all morning to pick up the fireplace Beloved Hubby found on Craigslist late last night. But he decided to wait a week, pay down some of the moving bills that are gonna be coming at us fast and hard soon, leave us some cash for groceries and a bit of fun instead. So he called the fireplace’s owners to let them know we couldn’t do it this week, but if they still had it next, we were there.

No problem, they wrote back, they had someone else interested. Then the snow started. So beautiful. And we got another text an hour or so later. If we needed the fireplace to stay warm in this cold weather, we could just come get it. For free. Isn’t that the sweetest thing ? And lemme tell ya, while the fireplace’s cost was very reasonable, it wasn’t pocket change, either – to most families, that’d be Christmas money. We told them that we were safe and warm, and fine, but we still want the fireplace, and would be glad to pay the asking price next weekend.

Now we both *really* want that particular fireplace, because it’s wrapped up with love.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

I may blow it all on Chinese food...

Rather quiet day – I cashed out the $15. in PineCone and am eagerly awaiting its deposit in Checking, where I can spend it. I was planning on using it to buy the Elsa ornament, but Beloved Hubby already did ! I was lucky, there were only four left. When Dearest Son and I went to use the last ‘$10. off $10.’ coupon, Kohl’s had at least a dozen.

So, now that I have $15. to burn, I’m doing my darndest to find something to light it up with ! And while there’s the usual patterns and such, I’m not really finding anything that really charges me, ya know ? I really am consumed with this move. 

Friday, November 14, 2014

Still so excited !

Finished up dealing with utilities today. Have to go to PreviousTown with the lease and ID Monday – I was able to scan and email it to the gas company, but PTown wants face time. That’s OK. Need to take Dearest Son up, show him which room will be his, let him look around some, because when I went there tonight with Beloved Hubby, we had to take the truck to haul up tools and such. And the truck is, unfortunately, only a two-seater.

We’re getting a new water heater – old was leaking – that Beloved will install after the snow forecast for the weekend. Without electric or gas, the water heater could be damaged if we install it tomorrow. Previous tenant left a ton of stuff, mostly trash, including two huge flat-screen TVs (broken screens, unreplaceable), twelve big contractor’s bags of more trash, and four sofas. We may actually save one, spray it down with rubbing alcohol and shove it outside to dry (kills any bugs that have nested within). And, as mentioned, some good stuff, like a short ton of disposable polystyrene bowls and plates and plastic silverware, three brooms, two mops, six coffee mugs and a white coffee maker identical to mine, but still in the box, several books, a card table, a set of unopened bed sheets, two purses, half a box of cat litter, three large plastic trash cans, a tote bag full of kids’ shoes, a Caboodle train case with makeup in it, and a fedora. There’s even more stuff, I just haven’t sorted through it all. 

Thursday, November 13, 2014

And in a day, everything changes...

Well. Guess who’s moving ! ‘No Deposit’ house’s landlord called Beloved Hubby, asked him to come see it, and talk with him. He called me nearly an hour later, asked if I was sure I wanted that place, and asked Dearest Son, too – and signed the lease. We’re to carpet/flooring and paint the place, which reduced our rent and provided our deposit. Paid the half-month rent already, so we have the key, and Beloved’s planning to get things started this weekend.

I actually sat and stared into space for a good half hour after his call. We can’t use SSVF after all, landlord doesn’t want to mess with applications and forms and neither does Beloved, but we can manage. However, that does mean I had a lot of work of my own to do – we needed to have electric, gas, and water/sewer activated in our names, or just plain activated, move our internet service, discuss what house works were getting done when, and how, not to mention moving all our stuff back to PreviousTown. But, oh, I could so do all that ! Immediately started calling utilities and getting stuff started. Since we can take our time moving, and Beloved wanted to get some things done before we officially started, we don’t really have a set moving day yet, but AT&T gave us an install date of Saturday, Nov. 28th for our Wi-Fi, so it looks like we’ll start settling in then. We may have Thanksgiving there, we’ll see.

I’m so excited ! It’s really a nice place, but sincerely needs some work and TLC. Beloved’s rattling off plans a mile a minute, and we’ll probably soon have our own reserved parking space at Home Despot. 

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

At least I didn't buy fabric today !

(shiver) So very cold… of course we went to Dollar Tree and Kohl’s ! Glad we did. I got two iridescent glittery white star ornaments, the only two rolls of Frozen wrapping paper in the store (opened a just-offloaded box to get ‘em, with permission), and a pair of 11.5oz Disney Princess microwaveable lidded containers, much like small GladWare disposable ones. They’re just the right size to hold some of the post-Halloween skeleton gummy candies I snagged on sale, four packages for $1.

We had to relocate a table from the kitchen to Beloved Hubby’s truck – it’s now a work table ! – so I moved the coffee maker to our bedroom. Now that it’s so close, and mornings are so chill, it’s being used a lot more ! Beloved prefers liquid creamers to milk, so he finished up my old bottle today. No problem. Got him a new one and another flavor for tomorrow, along with the dehydrated pineapple and papaya he likes. I’m sticking with milk, as the creamers are kinda sugar-heavy. Dearest Son made his usual choices, then added two more treats, from his yard sale stash. He’s making the most of his funds, I’m so proud.

Kohl’s has really put out toys for the holiday season, and they have TONS of Frozen stuff. No dolls. But lots of clothes and toys and things like snowglobes, jewelry, and stuffed Olafs. They had a huge one, taller than me, for $99. They even had $6. bags of winter-colored Frozen branded jellybeans ! I carried the Elsa ornament – on sale for $10.19 ! – around for a while, but Dearest selected a long-sleeved sweater-shirt that looked so good on him… well, maybe next time, Elsa ! With the ‘$10. off ‘ coupon, it was $4., and we were out the door. It’s so soft, and striped heather grey, black, and burgundy. From the Tony Hawk line, dontchaknow.

Finally got the application for that one ‘no deposit’ (snort) house, and it’s since been filled out and emailed back. We’ll see. At least there wasn’t an application fee ! Beloved has his eye on another place, waaaay out in the sticks, so if this one doesn’t pan out, we’ll probably go to their open house Saturday. There’s advantages to both, and I can be happy anywhere – long as I have Beloved and Dearest ! and I don’t have  to live with FIL…

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

More fabric ? Yeah.... but it was on sale !

(grin) Seems like Kohl’s isn’t the only one doing the ‘free stuff !’ coupon promo – today I got my second of these from Ace Hardware, $5. off anything in the store. Heck, I could get sodas and candy for us, if nothing else. And we needed lightbulbs. I hadn’t planned on going out today, but the coupon was good today only, a Veteran’s Day promotion.
$10. later, we left with a box of 40w bulbs (hard to find around here) and a set of Anchor Hocking lidded glass bowls ! I’d been wanting some, and these were good for cooking or storing leftovers. On sale, $12. for eight bowls of various sizes, with matching lids. 

I also talked Dearest Son into a quick trip to Tuesday Morning, where he fell in love with some RC cars – well noted, Christmas is coming. They had a few MH dolls, including the Heath & Abbey set for $15., but not much I wanted in Toys. The huge Whitman’s Sampler was tempting, though… darn diabetes ! I ended up spending $12. on fabric – two bundles of fat quarters (one with 5, the other 7, all different prints) and a luscious yard of raw-silk look emerald taffeta. Wish me luck sewing that one !

Since we were out anyway, we stopped by the thrift. Veteran’s Day sale there, too, so I got 25% off a pair of jeans for Beloved Hubby, a t-shirt for me, a bundle of about $20. worth of ribbon and lace (mostly because of one strip of lace very similar to some I couldn’t afford from an Etsy seller), and a complete The Onion Presents A Dumb, Thoughtless Gift page-a-day 2014 calendar. I’ve been enjoying that, believe it or not ! All for less than ten bucks. Whoo-hoo !

Lest you think I completely neglected Dearest, he has money to spend, he just chose not to spend it on anything he saw today. I got him a snack and a soda for being my shopping buddy, which he always likes. We also ordered the computer components he saved for this morning, so he’s clam-happy.

We also heard back from the landlord of that place we looked at in PreviousTown, the one that’s willing to work out a trade of paint and carpet for deposits. I thought he and Beloved had worked an agreement out between them, that’s why we were hurrying down there, but as it turns out, no. Even with ‘no deposits’, landlord still wants first month’s rent, and a full ‘mother’s maiden name’ application. He says he’ll decide between five other applicants in a few days, so we’ll see. I’m actually waiting for him to email me the app, he didn’t have any at the house. It’s a pretty chewed up place, but the bottom line is, I can be happy anywhere, long as I don’t have to live with FIL under the same roof. And I already know how good Beloved can make a neglected house look, so I’m game. I just want to know where we’re going, and when ! 

Monday, November 10, 2014

Elsa's here !

Up early to do laundry – the last triple load ! – and hit the bank. Not comfortable with that much cash lying around, and when Dearest Son and I decide to buy anything, it’ll be fine coming out of Checking, online or off. Got it all put away, then went on a dirty clothes safari about the wilds of Chez Insanity, and there’s already half another triple ready to go. By Wednesday, the basket will probably be full and overflowing. While I forgot to wash my new slippers, I finally remembered to throw in the dishtowels and the disgusting potholders – mine get manky in a few days, but I always forget to add them to the pile. Even got my MH mousepad clean… well, cleaner. How I got that so stained is beyond me.

Got an email from SSVF, that social services group for veterans that’s trying to help us with deposits and such on a new place, with several apartments and duplexes for rent that are evidently familiar with SSVF regs and paperwork. Beloved Hubby is on fire about getting out of here (although he does backtrack about the house at least four or five times a week), so we’ll look at them together tonight and maybe get things started. It’d be so nice if we can use SSVF’s help… won’t rely on it, but it’d help out so much. Looked at them all – no garages, but provided the neighborhood is decent, I wouldn’t have a problem living and being happy in any of them. Especially when money and food stop disappearing.

And, as you can see, Elsa arrived today, in the early afternoon. It may be just a coincidence, but we’re in for seriously colder weather for the next two weeks… I just have to say, wow. Disney certainly knows how to make a package special ! When I opened the box, the tissue paper was covering Elsa and the air bubble cushion, and it was like opening a rare gift from foreign climes. It even seemed like Tinkerbell and Pluto were impressed. What a beautiful doll. She was so worth waiting for, and would have been worth the $80. if I’d have had it. I keep staring at her, perfect in her box, wondering when I’ll be brave enough to take her out.

One odd thing. There’s a sticker on the bottom with three Disney character images – Grumpy, Chip and Dale, and Ariel – with their names underneath. What’s that for ? Is it a code for who picked and packed the box ? 

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Sunday tool time !

Another beautiful, if windy-cool, day. Up early to go with Beloved Hubby – he wanted tools with his funds, and if I went with, I’d get the Veteran discount on them. Even when we splurge, we’re thrifty !

My Etsy splurge yesterday seemed to cool me down for anything more than window shopping – which I did a lot of ! So many ways to spend my remaining funds. Doll shoes, patterns, books… there’s not a lot I want, but there’s tons I wouldn’t mind  having ! 

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Kind of a yawny day...

Can you believe I got another Kohl’s ‘ $10. off any $10. Purchase’ coupon ? Wish I could figure out how to get these forwarded to me when we move. They’re actually in MIL’s name, but she refuses to use them, even when I offer to drive her. You’d think she’d want some pillows or new towels, but no. Since I lost out on using my last one – ended up in the ER with a hernia that time – I’m looking forward to Tuesday, when this one is valid. 

Friday, November 7, 2014

Ain't nothin' goin' on but the laundry...

The only thing I had going on today was laundry, which felt rather odd. I kept thinking I had some appointment or something important to do immediately, but my next one’s not ‘til the 20th, with the VA. Once the latest load of clean clothes were put away, I napped. Felt like I deserved it !

Then I started cleaning up the Arena. It’d been a mess since a week before the yard sale, and I was simply too tired to fix it. Bits of MH furniture, single doll shoes, fabric scraps, broken pencils, and tiny computer screws everywhere. Took me two hours, but I finally got it all stored and situated, with about 50 more Lego pieces being returned to Dearest Son, and several pencils sharpened. I can sew if I want to now ! And I rather want to…

But even with the nap, I’m worn. The rainy weather triggered my asthma, and that keeps me awake and I crash a bit when the crisis passes. I just kinda stared into space and watched Grimm on Amazon Prime. I liked it, but it’s quite violent – good thing I have a fast trigger-finger for that ‘mute’ button. The show’s producers may think they’re sparing me the gore, but two minutes of screams is actually worse. 

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Hot Wheels Fun with Dearest Son !

Elsa is on her way ! Oddly, Diz billed me yesterday, but she didn’t ship ‘til late today. They’re normally very strict on the ‘no billing ‘til after shipping’ thing, but not so this time. I have no idea when she’ll get here – the tracking info is basically ‘we got that they’re gonna ship’ and not much else – but she’s already left California, so maybe Tuesday or so. While I’m jealous of everyone who’s had her for months, I’m probably just as excited as you were then !

I promised to take Dearest Son to Dollar Tree today – it seemed so unfair that I was getting to go everywhere, even if it was medical and paperwork, and he was stuck at home, except for Tuesday’s tires. Not a lot of fun, even if it was McD’s breakfast and the Mal-Wart Lego and computer sections. However, all this rain made it hard on my lungs, so it was slow going. He even offered to put things off if I wasn’t well. Ya’ll know me, that just made me so much more determined to get him to some fun. They finally had his favorite popcorn in, and I got a few groceries and the last of the frozen clams. Beloved Hubby has really enjoyed those. I got some leftover Halloween candy (no candy corn, darn it) and a bag of PopCorners, so I was happy, too. Had to hit Mal-Wart (the grocery one, not the big Mega-one with the auto service center) for a few extra things, so he got to pick out a 2-liter of his choice. He was all set for a junk-food afternoon !

He found a James Bond 007 Hot Wheels toy car and examined it thoroughly. I told him he could have it, but he said he wanted to save his money for his computer upgrade. Of course, I got it for him – who’s gonna say no when it’s only 84¢ ? He was so happy, he showed it off to the cashier and the guy behind us in line, saying it’d been a long time since he’d picked out a new Hot Wheels ! I now wonder if they thought we were seriously that broke…

Not that it matters. He was happy, and I was glad to see him so. Once we got home and shoved the frozen foods away, I more or less crashed for two hours. Then it was up and at ‘em for more laundry ! It had really backed up on us, but after today, there’s two more Laundromat triple-loaders (to me, it’d be two regular loads), and that even catches us up on sheets. I’ll do another tomorrow, then wait ‘til Monday to finish up. I’d rather leave the washers and dryers to the folks who need ‘em on weekends – plus by then, we’ll probably have another triple ready to go !