Monday, August 31, 2009

Cooking supper at 9:30 p.m. isn't my favorite thing to do

I'm not enjoying this semester and it's only a week old. It's so hard figuring out how much to take with me and with the all-day classes I have to figure in beverages, snacks and meals. Plus things to keep me occupied because I have a high boredom factor.

Still, it's the last semester and I won't have to do this ever again.

I missed church again yesterday because I didn't get to sleep until after 7 a.m. I don't do well on half an hour of sleep so I stayed home. I had thought about taking my blue over-the-counter sleeping pill but the last time I took one, while I slept well, I woke up very groggy. I didn't want to feel like that all during church.

I moved my potted plants to the side of the garage so I could remember to do something with them this week. Some I need to get in the ground, some I need to re-pot and others fix because the cat knocked them over. Completely over. The pot was upside down and all the plants and dirt on the ground. I obviously don't have a green thumb.

The good news is that I have three green peppers growing. The bad news is they should be big enough to pick by Christmas.

This is a short night for me because we have to leave in the morning to go back to FDL and not get home until 10:30 p.m. Fortunately I don't have to have another turnaround to Beaver Dam for a couple of weeks.

So I'm off to try to get to sleep early tonight. I know....I laughed at that, too.


Saturday, August 29, 2009

Feels like Autumn

I think I slept through summer. Although I'm pretty sure the first of October we will have temps in the 100s just because we can. is 56 degrees right now. I've got the windows shut and am sitting here in a sweatshirt. Personally I love it but I'm sure the farmers don't.

I'm trying to get the kitchen cleaned up and three loads of laundry are in process and then it's time to get ready for church tomorrow. I'm not sure where the whole day went either.

I did have to go get my prescription filled because come Monday we won't have coverage for a couple of weeks. I just found out this morning that they're changing our insurance company yet again which means we'll lose something else. We always do. Last time our deductible went up the percentage of coverage went down to 80% on all procedures. Except mammograms which they apparently stopped covering for a couple of years only to cover them again this year. And no one will tell me why.

So we'll be without insurance cards around the time I have to get my physical or I don't get my meds anymore. I'm sure the doctor will cut me some slack though if it's only a matter of weeks. I mean we'll still have coverage...just not a way to prove it.

I'm almost done with the baby blanket so I just kept on working on it last night while watching Bones (season three from the library.) I had the window next to the bed open all night and I had animals under the covers curled up next to me to where I couldn't move at all. I woke up so stiff. I might shut the window tonight.

And no, I didn't get my kick spindle out yet. Soon though. Very soon.

I feel a bit better today after taking some time yesterday to just rest. While I'm not abounding in energy, my mind is clearer and I don't have the weight of the world on my shoulders as much. I must remember to make this a part of my weekly routine no matter how much there is to do. I's not like the work is going to go away if I don't get to it immediately, right?

Off to finish up the laundry and kitchen so I can dive into my books and knitting.


Friday, August 28, 2009

Can't believe it's Friday already

It was a perfectly lovely day today and I took advantage of it. I slept in, did a minimal amount of work, read, caught up on the internet, knitted and watched some shows OnDemand I hadn't had time to watch last week. It was cool enough I curled up under a light blanket for a nap but not so cold I needed to shut the windows.

I need to do this once a week. I don't treat myself very well at all.

I'm making progress on the baby blanket for Haiti and plan on moving back to some other projects because I'm finding myself looking over in the corner where my other projects are, longing for some spice in my monogamous knitting life. I suspect I might actually cheat tonight and work on something that involves actual thinking.

I even looked at my kick spindle today and contemplated spinning some tonight. I dare say I might just do that.

Zach is trying to get back into the homework mode and is using our computer for most of it since he is afraid his laptop might crash again and lose all his work. Not a problem and it gets me offline so I can get something else done.

I forgot to get my pain pills refilled yesterday so I called them in today and will pick them up tomorrow. It's such a pain to try to figure out what I'm going to run out of. And I don't believe it will be only a couple of weeks before we have prescription coverage again. The person in charge doesn't seem to be rushing to find a new program. I'll pick them up tomorrow. Today I didn't even get out of my pajamas.

And that's a good thing.

I do need to make my way outdoors to get some things done out there. Maybe tomorrow. And according to my own pace. I'm learning not to push myself and not to work on someone else's timetable. I'll do what I can, when I can.

Off to finish up supper which is baked ziti, although I'm using a bit of ground beef in it this time. I'm really craving meat lately. Must need the extra protein or something.


Thursday, August 27, 2009

Get out the sweaters

I'm cold.

And I'm positively giddy about it. I plan on leaving the windows open and putting a blanket on the bed tonight. I'm sorry for the farmers; I really am. But this is like a reward for me living through a very cold winter with very little heat in the house. I don't have to endure a really hot summer. At least not so far.

I hadn't planned on doing any errands today, instead using this as a day to get caught up on chores and rest, but the personnel director at Tom's work informed him at change of shift that our prescription insurance will run out on Monday and we'll be without for a few weeks so I need to get my prescriptions re-filled before then. Because they require 24 hours notice, that didn't give me a lot of time. Plus, I can't refill more than a week out so I'm going to be stuck before coverage starts up again.

I'm pretty sure they're renegotiating our health care coverage, too, so I expect to have our premiums go up yet again and our coverage go down just like it has the past few years. We're already to the point where we can't afford to actually use our insurance much at all. I expect the free physical to be history very soon. If that happens, I won't be having physicals anymore which means my doctor won't prescribe my medicine anymore. If I won't go in to see her yearly, she won't prescribe my meds. What a system!

But yeah...our health care is top notch here in the old US of A. I try to remind myself that I have insurance, however crappy it may be, but that my niece has been living for years without it. Or that there are people out there unable to get preventive care because no doctor will see them until their situation becomes critical and they have to go to the Emergency Room, by which time their health is severely compromised and the costs to fix it (if indeed they can at that late date) have gone through the roof.

Or that in a few short months, Zach will be uninsured.

How pathetic that we as a nation have so little regard for our fellow citizens that we fight against universal health care because "it's not my responsibility." I guess I'm not my brother's keeper after all.

Sorry. End of rant.

On the plus side, I talked to my doctor's nurse today and she's agreed to do my labs before my annual physical so I don't have to come in for an office visit a week later. That's a good thing.

As a result of the running around (had to visit the library as well) I got little done today but I am truly not worried about it. I've done very well to keep things tidy and meals prepared, laundry done, bills paid, errands run. I've got to stop buying into the myth that because I'm not out there bringing in a paycheck, I'm a burden. I earn my keep. And I do it well.

Off to fix a very unhealthy, but economic and tasty, meal of hot dogs, mashed potatoes and sauerkraut. Easy, fast, and comfort food. I'm so good to me.

If only those bad-for-you-foods weren't so tasty.


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

I swear I fastforwarded through the past week

Where did the week go? It seems a blur between the cleaning and starting school. And trying desperately to find some energy to go with all of the above. Surprisingly I've been sleeping lately. Good, nearly uninterrupted sleep. Nearly 8 hours worth nightly.

And I'm still so very tired all the time. I got on the scales the other day thinking I would either faint from the numbers I was seeing or start screaming. I haven't gained a pound from last year's physical. So obviously all I need to do is start eating a bit healthier and add some exercise. Slowly though. Always before I start up like gangbusters and wear out within a week or so. Dieting only makes me hungrier and in time starving so that I just can't stand it anymore and start eating unable to stop.

I'm definitely not getting on that merry-go-round again.

But I do need to increase my cardio strength. I need to be able to climb some stairs without panting. I need to get through a day feeling good about myself instead of berating myself for not accomplishing anything.

Yesterday was the long day at FDL. Fortunately they showed the new Star Trek movie during the early evening and while there were only two of us in the room throughout the whole movie, I did enjoy it. I had brought my knitting to do while I read Harry Potter so I has plenty to do while watching. And Zach left me his laptop so I could watch Firefly on but I forgot any headphones so I could barely hear anything. Laptops aren't great for sound. Next week I'll remember to bring them.

No school today for Zach although we crawled out of bed at the ungodly hour of 7 a.m. and drove there anyway. Serves us right for not actually reading the whole schedule. I plan on leaving him there on Wednesdays instead of staying in the car. No shade for one thing and it's not that far from home for another. I can accomplish a lot in four hours at home that I couldn't do while waiting for him. And with gas still under $3 a gallon, I think we'll be okay. Now we just need to see what his internship will be and when and where.

And of course today I decided that while I was in Beaver Dam I would just do all the shopping, library trips and errands only to get home and see that the show that I put on hold had come in after I was there. I had hoped not to go back to BD until Sunday for church but I think I'll go Friday and give myself tomorrow off. I need to get some meals prepared and frozen ahead of time for next week so I might as well do it while I have free and total access to the kitchen. Weekends there is a trigger that goes off in everyone's brain when I start baking or cooking that tells them to go to the kitchen and compete with me for space. I have seriously had to just put things away because we have a tiny galley kitchen that two people cannot occupy at the same time. Let alone three. So...if I wait until Tom goes to work I should be pretty safe because Zach I can boss around. Tom not so much.

I started a new baby blanket for the Haiti project. I have a huge bag of odds and ends of colors with not enough of one color scheme to make anything. So I'm using sage green as a base (which I seem to have plenty of but not the same dye lot) I'm reaching blind into my bag and knitting two rows of whatever color I pull out. Just a plain stockinette with garter stitch edgings and it's working out pretty well. Two rows (or four if I just get the urge) of whatever color and then two rows of the sage green. It's odd how these disparate colors are blending well together. Maybe I'll break down and take some pictures tomorrow of the stuff I've been knitting.

Just a thought.

Off to read some Harry Potter and some Bishop Spong that I got from the library today. The Tuesday night turnaround will be difficult but it will only be for 8 weeks so I'll keep my fingers crossed that I can survive it.


Thursday, August 20, 2009

Mid August and the most beautiful weather

I did all the errands today and forgot to stop by the campus and pick up one of Zach's books for a class he needs on Monday. So...I'll need to make another trip tomorrow. With all that driving facing me, I'm beginning to feel like a hermit, wanting to stay home and not leave. Of course, after a couple of days of that I'm squirming with cabin fever. So off to pick it up first thing tomorrow so I can get busy with some cooking and freezing for next week.

We didn't stop and get his driving permit though. He asked if we could wait another week for that. I will but it's hard to know when to back down and when to keep encouraging. I walk a fine line that his doctor agrees with although no one in the family does. Not even his own father. I've become the perpetual bad guy.

Too tired to cook tonight so I bought a can of beef stew for Tom. We grabbed a bite out...sort of a last hurrah because we won't be able to do it again for a long time. We each had a book from the library: I had Dead Until Dark (the first Sookie Stackhouse book) and Zach had a book about the man who wrote Groucho Marx's films and was influential in comedy in the early era of television. Can't think of his name right now but Zach was chortling throughout supper. It was a nice relaxing time except for one diner who had to talk quite loudly to her daughter and granddaughter. I'm sure there are people who just naturally talk a bit louder than other people but it was a bit annoying. Yes, I can be snarky.

I got set 12 of Midsomer Murders from the library today. I'm not sure I've seen this season but if I have, it's only been once when it was on television. I'm a bit excited to get started on it so I'm going to hop into bed early tonight and maybe finish up the next baby blanket. Then I think I'm going to start on the grocery bags to sell at church to help out with our deficit. Not that it will be much though.

I'm saving the sock for travel next week. I don't plan on taking games this time but I'll be using that time for study and research. I've got some books on herbs, religion and history that I'm goint to read for the next few weeks. Who knows where my interests will go from there.

Off to finish up my chores for the day which includes a bit of handwashing and dish washing and then curling up to watch DCI Tom Barnaby et al.


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

As the vacation ticks away

Time has really been speeding by this week. I'm guessing it's because this is the last week of summer vacation and the fates aren't going to let me enjoy it. I've found another full and heavy bag of stuff to take to the thrift store so the trunk is pretty full and I need to empty it tomorrow or I won't be able to fit any groceries in it.

Zach will be getting his permit tomorrow and I've asked him to set the goal of driving himself to class in Beaver Dam by the end of the semester. I'm sure he'll be doing it long before then but giving him lots of leeway lets up on the stress. Stress is never good to dump on a person with OCD. I'm not sure why no one in the family seems to get that but they don't. Frankly, I don't think they believe there is such a thing or that it is what it is. They believe he just needs to "get over it." Just like these same family members think people with Fibromyalgia just need to "get over it" too.

Bad for me, one of Zach's days in Fond du Lac is 12 hours long for two classes. I'm wracking my brain trying to figure out what to take for supper on that day because we just can't afford to eat out even from the dollar menu. We won't get home until 9:30 p.m. on Monday and turn around and leave by 10:30 Tuesday morning and get home 10:30 p.m. Tuesday night. And 8:30 a.m. in Beaver Dam on Wednesday morning. If it weren't for the hour drive to FDL it wouldn't be so bad but two hours is added to the day and that makes it so long. I do plan on just dropping him off in Beaver Dam though. It's a four hour class and there's no reason for me to wait for him as long as gas stays under $3 a gallon.

I do think he's ready to start short driving excursions on back roads as long as no one else pushes him again.

I don't know when we'll find out about the internship but I'm really hoping it will be in our area. That will save us a lot of money.

We should get the financial aid by the end of September. Until then we have to really pinch pennies so tightly they scream. The pantry is looking a bit emptier but there is still a lot of staples. I just need milk, eggs and some more ground meat that I can divide into half pound packages. I had 5 pounds of ground meat last me almost 3 weeks and I still have a chicken breast, two cans of tuna and some hot dogs left. I think we'll catch back up by the end of this month.

It looks like I'm going to have some green peppers in a short while, too. There are three blossoms on one plant, which confuses me because I thought each plant only produced one pepper at a time, and the other plant has two blossoms. I will chop those bad boys up and keep them in the freezer until we need them so they don't go bad.

All in all, I'm feeling more optimistic about the winter. I rearranged the old dining room/new living room so the couch isn't blocking the heating vent. Trouble is all the other walls are too short for the couch so I angled it a bit. Tom liked it, surprisingly but asked me what I was going to do about the back of the couch/futon because it shows when you first walk in the door. I intended to just drape a blanket over it but in the middle of the night I thought of the water bed headboard his sister had given him. It's narrow and tall and fits perfectly behind the couch. It also has bookshelves in it so I was able to find a place for my books and old vhs tapes I don't want to get rid of yet.

Tom loved it! It's not often he gushes over something I do but he really seemed to mean it. It perked me up a bit, I can tell you.

We're having pizza tonight except I didn't have any spaghetti sauce so I made some out of tomato sauce. I added garlic to the dough (made my own) and it has a different flavor to it. In fact, I don't think I'll go back to spaghetti sauce for pizza again. Zach told me it's the best I've ever made. Both the guys prefer my pizza to store bought or even Domino's or Pizza Hut. I think they're lying but I'll take the praise.

I have some ironing to do tonight after I've done up the dishes and the new season of Ghost Hunters is on tonight so I'm going to finish eating and get my stuff done so I can curl up in bed and knit. I'm working on another baby blanket for Haiti babies. This one is mostly white with black, blue and gray. I'm working with the yarn I got from a woman at church who found this huge bag of yarn at a rummage sale. I think I can get about 4 blankets out of it. She only paid $3 for the whole bag. And there is some yarn there that is a bit too scratchy for newborns that I can knit up into blankets for the fur babies at the Humane Society in our county.

I do have a shawl I'm working on that will be done before long and I want to knit up some grocery bags to sell at church. Our church finances are a bit bleak right now due to the economy and losing several elderly parishioners lately. I love this church and just wish I could afford to give more money but I do what I can. It's all I can do.

It's going to be a lovely cool evening tonight so I should sleep well. I've had some good sleep for a few nights but last night the dog was going ballistic over some critter in the yard again. He's lost some weight since his leg healed up and when I checked on him this morning he was lying on the porch and his leash and collar were in the middle of the yard. Just minutes after I brought him in, the paper boy and his siblings rode by on their bikes. I shudder to think what would have happened if he had been off his leash. I've been keeping a closer eye on him since then. I think I'm going to limit him to the back yard during the day and only let him out in front for a wee in the night. We've had a lot of foot and bike traffic lately and he gets very agitated over it.

Off to wash up and get the ironing done.


Saturday, August 15, 2009

Yep...summer is here at last

I survived the medium sized drama and lived to not tell about it. Trust me, it's boring and uneventful after the fact.

Just got back from a funeral though. A very nice woman from church died Friday and her funeral was today. We don't have air conditioning in our church so it was so very hot but the service was nice. I had never been to an Episcopal funeral before but it was pretty similar to regular services so it wasn't hard to follow.

I had knit a prayer shawl but didn't know who it was going to when I saw Betty sitting quietly in her pew praying before the service (which is the norm in Episcopal churches...we don't visit in the nave. We do that in the narthex. The nave is for prayer and contemplation. Unless you happen to be one lady in our church who yells at people across the room and talks to them while you're kneeling in prayer.)

I digress...yet again.

Anyway, I gave the shawl to Betty, explained what it was and she seemed a bit astonished and thanked me. During announcements, she told everyone what I had done (while I wished desperately for a hole to open up so I could hide in it) and quite tearfully thanked me in front of everyone. It's not why I do it. I know I should be more gracious and just say you're welcome, but I do it for them, not me, and hate the attention I get for it.

She told everyone about that shawl and how special it made her feel.

So I was sad to hear that she had died. She had had cataract surgery several months ago but something must have gone wrong because she lost her vision from it and they couldn't fix it. She hated losing her independence and very quickly went downhill after learning there was nothing she could do. She had moved to long term care, which she hated, so I figure she got out of it the only way she could.

I'm sure right now she's having a pretty good time seeing the sights and visiting with her beloved husband and old friends.

But it was murderously hot in the church. Poor Mary had to wear the alb and chasuble and was soaked by the time it was all over. Welcome back from retreat. In fact, she had to cut it a bit short. That's the second vacation she's had to cut short due to a death in our parish.

Zach got his financial package and it's pretty darned nice even if it is a bit late. With the grants and the student loan it will take care of all the tuition and books plus leave a sizeable amount for transportation costs. A blessing indeed.

And school starts in about a week. Only two days a week in Fond du Lac, one in Beaver Dam aside from whatever his internship is. This will be so much easier on us especially with the reduced income. And some money in the bank for gas from the tuition assistance.

Tonight is The Royal, Doc Martin, Doctor Who and Almost Human...and some of these are on at the same time on different channels. Good thing Almost Human is rerun later in the evening. I have Midsomer Murders set 6 and 9 to watch this week as well plus tons of reading.

And lots of yard work to get done this week, too, since it's getting late in the summer and I need to start preparing for next year. I'm working on storing up supplies for winterizing the house as well but mostly I'm just trying to locate where they are in this house first before I go out and buy anything more. We still need to be as frugal as we can...pretty much forever.

Off to go sit in front of the fan and try to stay awake. All that heat almost put me to sleep but if I nap now, I won't get to sleep before Tuesday.


Friday, August 14, 2009

Weekend sabbatical of sorts

I most likely won't be blogging all weekend. Some medium sized drama here and if I write too much more, I'll start whining and will have to delete.

Sorry for the lack of content.


Thursday, August 13, 2009

I remembered the Perseids.

I managed to see a few meteorites streaking across the sky but as I was watching, I was doing this weird gyrating dance called the Get These D*mned Mosquitoes Off Of Me ballet number 6 in E major. Our backyard is home to a nation of mosquitoes. And that's why I rarely go outside after dark.

Today was hectic. Zach got his books and wiped out a third of his savings account but they are paid for and the last he will buy. Found out his internship will be managed from Beaver Dam so we won't have to drive to Fond du Lac for that. He even has a chance of getting one through the school itself. Good news just keeps happenin'.

Unfortunately got the insurance bill today, too, and I'm planning on starting my heart up again soon as I wasn't expecting it this month for some reason. I've got $150 in extra bills this month already and the payment for the insurance is around $300. Let's see how far I can stretch the food we've got in the pantry and freezer 'cause that's the only leeway I've got.

Somehow it will work out because it has to. There's just no alternative. It has to work out.

I'm going to work in the yard tomorrow and get some things in the ground. I've decided to keep the strawberries in pots because my sister-in-law told me the roots on her strawberries got eaten up by chipmunks and those are the little beggars that keep me up at night because Professor can hear and smell them and barks hysterically at them at 4 a.m. So if they're in the area, I'd better not put food out for them. I can move some of my other stuff into the ground though and that will free up some pots for more strawberries. I also have a green pepper growing. It may be the only one I get but I'll sure enjoy it.

I started knitting a charm bag necklace last night. Just something I'm making up as I go along. I'm knitting it with size 0 double pointed needles and using crochet cotton size 10. The stitches are so tiny. I'll let you know how it works out.

The Jaywalker socks are moving along in spite of the crummy sock yarn. Once knitted it looks great, but it's splitty and tends to bunch up and give me thick spots. I'm planning on working on the beaded scarf tonight. I've been neglecting it the past couple of nights.

And Vicki is kicking my hind end to get my spindle out and spinning so I'm planning on doing that tomorrow. Waves at Vicki. I also want to get back to drawing. I got discouraged and put it up again but I won't get better that way so...perseverance is my new watchword.

And the piano just keeps quietly looking at me all the time, waiting for me to notice how clean and shiny she is, just longing for some affectionate touching. I'm going to do that when I finish this post 'cause I really do miss her.

Well, off to finish up the kitchen, play the piano and then Midsomer Murders and some knitting.


Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Must not forget the Perseid Shower tonight like I did last night.

Sorry for the silence. There's some minor drama going on and I don't want to go back to ranting on this blog like I did before so sometimes it's better to just be silent.

I'm trying to stay awake long enough to watch the meteor shower tonight. I fear last night was more spectacular but I'll try. The last time we saw it was in Lemoore, Ca in the playground across from our cul de sac. Zach and I took lawn chairs and sat in the field and watched the magnificent display of nature. People drove by and looked at us but no one stopped to watch with us. Shame.

School starts in a couple of weeks so we need to get Zach's books soon. He's paying for them out of his savings so that is a relief. I'm hoping he doesn't need a book for everything but there is one course that doesn't start until halfway through so we can wait to buy that one.

He was ready to get his permit until Tom's accident and the thought of being squished between a semi and a guard rail now has him hyperventilating. I'm trying to convince him to at least get his license so he can drive in town or between towns. If he can get a job around here, he won't have to drive far. He's considering it.

I didn't hang clothes out yesterday. The fatigue level is high and I just wimped out and put a load in the dryer. It's too hot to use it today though so I'll wait and dry another load tonight. Maybe I can get two in since I'm not getting to bed at any reasonable time. I did manage to sleep until 11 a.m. and that sounds good until you realize I didn't get to sleep until 6 a.m.

Yep...five hours again.

I've been working on the beaded scarf again and started a new pair of socks for my mom. These are a pretty teal, yellow, green and purple self-striped yarn that I'm doing in Jaywalker pattern. I love the way it chevrons the stripes. But I'm not loving the yarn. I got it at Hobby Lobby and won't make that mistake again. I'll just have to knit socks less and get the good yarn at Loose Ends. (See sidebar) They usually have a good supply.

I picked up my feather and fan shawl again but it was a bit too hot for it until late at night and by that time I was seeing double so I put it up. I have some cotton I can use for grocery bags so I might start one tonight. Cotton I can knit any time.

I should get back to spinning on my kick spindle. I had it out last month and really enjoyed it but I keep forgetting. It's not hot to use since I don't end up with a lapful of wool but I just never seem to remember. And it sits on top of the television that I look at every day.

I need a new brain, I think.

Off for a nap because as hard as I try I can't stay awake until this evening and then I must fix supper. I'm using a store brand box mix of macaroni and cheese and will add 3 ounces of fried up hamburger (drained and rinsed) into it with a veg and salad. Cheap and easy. Not to mention quick.

I hope to get outside this week for yardwork but I'm having trouble functioning from the pain and fatigue right now. I feel like the answer is right out of reach. Sigh.


Monday, August 10, 2009

Stuff just keeps happenin'

It started out as a pretty good day. I woke up way too early as usual but had a little bit more energy so I started doing some deep cleaning on Zach's room and the bathroom and upkeep on what I had already cleaned.

I was bone tired by midafternoon so I took a short nap after taking a pain pill because I hurt all over but I did manage to nap well and woke feeling tired but rested. Believe me, it makes sense in my head.

Around 5:30 the phone rang and it was Tom. He and his sister went up north to their brother's cabin for some fishing and were due home tonight so I didn't think anything about it. He usually calls when he's about an hour from home. And he was an hour from home, but that wasn't why he called. A semi ran him off the road and sideswiped him and then kept going. He wanted me to call the police because he didn't think this was a 911 emergency.

I told him it was a hit and run and he needed to call the police now. His sister had told him the same thing.

So I fretted while waiting for him to get home. He had assured me no one was injured so that was one worry I didn't have, but with all our vehicle problems, all I could think about was how badly damaged the truck was.

He finally got home and there is an 18 inch gash on the right front fender, down to the metal. And a tiny ding in the right side mirror. Talk about divine intervention. This semi just switched lanes without looking and there was a guard rail to the left of Tom because they were on a bridge so he was squashed between the rail and the truck. He's an excellent driver so he was able to slam on the brakes and get over as far as he could but if they had hit the rail they would have been bounced back into the semi and it would have been all she wrote.

I'm so grateful that no one was injured (although I can't help wishing a hex or two on the driver who blithely damaged our truck and nearly killed my husband and sister in law and no I wouldn't do that even if I could.)

That said, Tom is still a bit shaken and went to bed early.

I keep telling him there are a bunch of lousy drivers out there. And he wonders why Zach is afraid to drive.

Oh, yes, he was after him last week to just suck it up and get his license, after telling me he understands about the OCD.

'Nuff said.


Saturday, August 8, 2009

Life is good after all

Tom left this morning with his sister to go up north to their brother's cabin for a weekend of fishing. While I was left with the option of driving her car, I'm not comfortable doing that because, of course, what can go wrong, will.

But then it does anyway. Zach and I decided that since I never get vacations we would take a mini one and go to Cousins for a sandwich and soup. And expensive option that I shouldn't have done considering the money situation but we did it anyway. I was going to swing by StuffMart and pick up some bolts, washers and nuts so I can attach the headboard to my bed and have my room feel more like a bedroom rather than a living room that has been turned into a bedroom. You know...that temporary feeling. I'm looking for permanent. Very tired of feeling like there is no real room for me in this house.

I digress.

Anyway, we came out and the car wouldn't start. It clicked, but it wouldn't turn over. Luckily I had some jumper cables in the trunk so we popped the hood and Zach sort of held the cables up so anyone driving around the parking lot would see we had the means to help someone help us.

A wonderful man and his family stopped and tried to help but the battery wouldn't take a charge. Now this battery is located in the wheel well of the car. Not easy to see. Not easy to get to. You have to remove the air filter compartment to even see it.

As it got darker, another guy came over and looked around, told us we weren't getting a connection because the terminal is too badly corroded. Great! We had information. He was a mechanic but couldn't stay to help but I assured him he helped us immensely.

I trotted off across a huge parking lot to StuffMart to get the tools I needed to repair the battery, not having a single tool in the car. But by the time I got back, the car was running and Zach was standing outside looking for me. The nice man and his family got done eating and came out, cleaned the terminal for me and put everything back together. Zach thanked him profusely and the nice man and his family got back in his a dead battery.

Fortunately the battery charge on our car was fine so he jumped his car from ours and went his merry way. I tried to give him some money earlier but he wouldn't take it.

There are some wonderful people in this world.

And now I have some tools for the car that will stay there in case I break down again only not right across a parking lot from a store.

Life is good.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Burned out

I guess I knew, deep down inside me, that it would happen, that the energy pulse would slow down, but it's still a downer to me. I could get used to getting a lot of things done in the course of a day. But today I'm just maintaining. I'm keeping clean what is clean but not making progress otherwise.

I am hoping that my bounce back is quicker this time though. I have so much that needs to be done.

I really need to get my plants transplanted to the ground, which means a lot of digging in clay that has some pretty compacted grass roots. Tom is going up north this weekend to his brother's cabin with his sister driving up this time so maybe I'll get it done today. I don't really want to spend my entire free weekend working but what choices do I have?

Zach's TBA classes that we couldn't find out the dates on turn out to be online courses. He's not happy about it since he doesn't feel he learns as well or as much online but his instructor is one he's very familiar with so that might make a difference. Fortunately for us, that means less driving time to Fond du Lac. Now we just need to hear about the internship. I hope against hope it can be down here somewhere instead of an hour away.

I need to get supper started so this will be a short entry. I'm so very tired today. I was so heartened by all that energy only to have days like this. At least I'm not confined to the couch though and that's a gift. Normally on a down day I can't function at all.


Wednesday, August 5, 2009

I'm learning to love lunar eclipses

I'm beginning to be convinced that lunar eclipses affect your energy. I've been going non-stop since last night when I got this unexplained surge of energy. I'm hoping I don't lose my momentum tomorrow though.

Last night I decided, after months of getting an average of 5 hours sleep (with the occasional 6-7 hour night) that something had to change. So I moved the dining table down to the basement (with Zach's help, of course) and moved the couch back into the dining room, which is now the den and moved the full size bed from the garage to my room, the former living room. The box spring and mattress were really rough looking; I double checked for critters and didn't see any although I did destroy a lot of spider eggs. I have a two inch thick foam pad for the mattress that really helped because you can see where the springs in the mattress are just under the fabric. And believe me, it's like the princess and the pea. Fortunately the foam pad worked perfectly and I didn't feel a single spring.

Surprisingly Tom was very pleased with the changes as he now has a living room of sorts to relax in before he goes to bed at night after a long shift. Usually he hates it when I rearrange furniture. Last weekend he was watching tv in my room/living room and fell asleep. I really needed a nap that afternoon and there was no place to sit and relax, let alone snooze. I ended up sitting at the dining table with my head on my arms trying to sleep. Zach found me like that and gave me his pillow. Tom woke up and apologized and gave me my bed back. That was partly the impetus for the change. It's not fair to him and it's not fair to me. So now we have options.

And while I didn't sleep long last night...another 5 hours...I did sleep much better. I wasn't worried about the leg falling out from under the couch or the futon sinking between the bars that it rests on. Complete restful sleep. Although I could have slept another 6 hours or so.

Must be the lunar eclipse.

So today I did a thorough cleaning on the living room/den, including dusting furniture and getting rid of all those dust elephants (much too big for bunnies.) I really should do this more often than once a year.

I did some sorting as well and dug out all my piano books and sheet music. I really am going to start playing again.

Then I decided to do the shopping tonight so tomorrow was free for yard work. Wednesday isn't the best day for shopping because the shelves were mighty bare. I did get everything on my list and my total was half what I normally spend. But I will have to pick up two things that I forgot to add to my list but that's under $20 so I'm still good.

I'm going to fix macaroni and cheese (homemade) tonight but first I'm going to finish up the kitchen. I've got the floor to mop and then I'm done. After supper, I must get the bathroom scrubbed and the plants watered.

Then I plan on a nice hot shower and some knitting and crocheting. I'm working on the beaded scarf again, usually one repeat a night, which is about an inch. Last night I dropped two stitches back several rows so I ended up doing two repeats and that's all I had the energy for. I've started a crocheted shawl made of motifs, which I don't really enjoy that much but these are triangular instead of round so it makes it a bit more interesting. It's made of crochet thread, which I do enjoy working with a lot. Plus it's an economical way of making a very light, lacy shawl.

I also plan on coming up with a pattern for some dog blankets for the Humane Society. I'm thinking crocheted squares (not granny squares) that I can just sort out later. Or I might just knit some modular squares. They knit up quickly.

Zach and I are going to start turning the garden next week. We're going to just do it by hand. I figure a half-hour each will accomplish a lot before fall. And I can start adding the leaves when they start falling and won't have to worry about doing it all in one weekend. Historically that has never come to fruition. Plus we can use the exercise.

And speaking of exercise, I'm convinced that some of this fatigue is because of the sugar I'm eating. So I'm going cold turkey on the sweet stuff and replacing snacking with exercise. I need to get in shape before winter or I'm going to be hurting. Plus I need to motivate Zach. He's too young to start having the problems I'm having.

Well, my break is over and it's time to mop the floor. Maybe I'll catch the lunar eclipse tonight. At any rate, full moons are nice to look at, too.


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Is it only Tuesday?

As usual, I'm dragging from lack of sleep. Monday night I slept for a bit and got woke up and then had trouble getting back to sleep. Particularly since there was a storm in the area. I'm a bit phobic about tornadoes so I tend to stay awake watching the radar if there is one in the area. Before radar, I would watch the sky. Ever since I was about 7 or 8, I've done this. My mother came to wake us up for school one morning and I was still at the window watching the sky. I had to go to school anyway. And my mom told me not to be silly.

Stuff like that doesn't help someone get over an irrational fear.

So I was settling in because I could hear the thunder moving way off in the distance, had turned the lights off and was finishing up a movie I was watching. Out of the corner of my eye, through the window fan and the blinds, I saw a streak of light and BAM!!!! Initially I thought the lightning had hit between our house and the house next door, but in retrospect...lacking any electrical charge in the air or any flicker in the power...I believe what I saw was a very bright reflection of the lightning strike. Very bright. Certainly the strike and the thunder were nearly simultaneous so it was very close by.

It woke Tom up and we checked our house and Eleanor's house visually for fire. Then Tom went to sleep and I sat in bed awake for another two hours. The sky was light when I finally dozed off.

So at 7:30 a.m. Professor started barking wanting outside. I got up and let him out only to watch him stand on the porch and look around for a few minutes and then want back in. I let him in and went right back to bed where I slept until about 9. I had no energy to get much done. I had some sourdough rising and had to take care of it but I ended up punching it down at the final rising and froze it. I have no idea what's going to happen with it but it's thawing out now.

I had to pay the utility bill so while I was out I ended up going to StuffMart to get some milk and a few necessary (and not so necessary) items. I need more willpower.

But that was it for all the energy I had.

Last night I fell asleep quiet easily but within about 5 minutes, Professor was going off on something outside, barking hysterically. At that stage I was okay with a burglar walking in if the dog would just shut up! But I knew it was most likely the pesky chipmunk from next door (you get to know their barks after a while) so I shushed him and tried to get back to sleep. It's amazing what 5 minutes of sleep will do toward disrupting your sleep cycle. It was about 3 a.m. before I got back to sleep. Professor was panting last night, not being used to normal temperatures for the summer because of all the cool weather we've had. I turned the window fan on, which is immediately next to the bed. He slept nearly butted up against it and all was well until about 7 a.m. when he woke me up wanting outside again. Three times between 7 and 7:45 we played the game: get up out of bed to let him out on his leash only to watch him sniff the air from the porch, look around for about 2 minutes and then want back in. The fourth time, I ignored him and he eventually laid back down and went back to sleep.

At 9 the cat woke me up wanting to sleep on my face. At that stage I just got up. I've been dragging ever since.

I've got three loads of laundry to do today. Sheets that need to be done today since Tom already took his off his bed. And these are the only sheets he likes to sleep on. I don't blame him as they are very smooth (on sale) and feel very good to sleep on.

Supper tonight will be homemade pizza with a sourdough crust. I hope. I also hope to get the kitchen and bathroom done today. Tomorrow I have to do some planting. My strawberries are too big for the pot they're in so I'm going to dig up the side hill a bit. And maybe get the rest of the strawberries in the pot so they can grow up a bit before I put them in the ground. Apparently putting seeds directly into the soil we have is a waste of time. Hopefully transplanting will work.

I think it's too late for squash and pumpkins though. I do plan on starting next year's garden much earlier. Plus I want to use as much of the yard as is practical. Tom got some posts from his sister so that will help immensely with putting up a wire fence around our garden. At least maybe I can get the herb garden ready this year. And try to figure out a system to it.

I finished up my dad's socks and am working on fur scarf. I'm trying to use up my stash and I found that yarn in my bin upstairs so I thought it would be a quick finish. I need to see something done from time to time. I got a pattern for a blanket from a friend so I might use that to knit all the yarn I've got leftover from the woman at church.

I'm also thinking of making granny squares of the odds and ends I have accumulated over the years and making dog blankets for the Humane Society.

Some day I would love to knit a sweater again. But yarn for that is expensive and to be honest, as long as I have something to knit, I'm okay for the most part. It's mostly the knitting I love. The finished product is just a bonus.

Well, the clothes are done spinning so I need to hang them out and put another load in.


Sunday, August 2, 2009

A pretty busy Sunday

Another busy day. I hung out three loads of clothes (and obviously brought them in and folded them,) worked on the kitchen and did some cooking. We're having the tortillas I made yesterday for supper tonight. It's just a quick casserole thing that I ended up putting into flour tortillas one day and it became a regular meal for us. Hamburger, cooked rice, cream of mushroom soup and some picante. Sprinkle on cheese in the tortillas and eat it. I need brainless meals most of the time.

I finished up the other baby blanket last night and frogged the purse I was crocheting. I'm not sure what I want to do with the cotton yarn because I've grown to really dislike the colors. Not sure why I picked these colors. I'm sure I thought it was a good idea at the time.

I'm nearly done with my dad's socks and I have more sock yarn but I want something new to work on. I'm thinking of taking all my odd bits of sock yarn and knitting up some amulet bags. Not sure what to do with them once they're knitted up but the idea appeals to me.

How Do You Solve a Problem Like Maria is on in a few. The final, which is old news, I know, but I haven't seen it even if I do know who wins. After that is When Joseph met Maria. I've seen bits of it but not the whole thing so I'd like to see that as well.

I just finished up last week's episode of True Blood. Makes me want to watch it tonight but I probably won't. I've got too many things to watch tonight. I'm in the process of going through all 5 Harry Potter dvds after I got to see movie 6. And I've got some reading to get done tonight as well.

Supper is ready so I'm off to munch.