Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Tuesday Thoughts About...


There were seven and now there are six.

I feel privileged in so many ways:
1. It was a privilege that he was my brother.
2. It was a privilege to spend quite a bit of time with him the last couple of months.
3. My sister-in-law, Janet allowed me and my sisters to stay 24/7 near the end. That is not lost on me. Having people in the house is not easy. It was a privilege to take care of him.
4. Sharing this time with my sisters was a privilege.
5. Helping Janet during this difficult time continues to be a privilege.

We'll miss him. It was a privilege for sure.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Monday Mystery

I just found out that you can order cockroaches online.

OMGosh! And they are expensive!! 12 of them for $23.00! Seems to me that you could find someone locally to let you trap some for free!

It's a mystery to me as to why anyone would want to buy cockroaches. I can only come up with a couple of reasons:
1. You want to take revenge on someone by releasing thousands (or even 2---you know how they multiply) in to the home of your enemy.
2. You want to develop a really creepy haunted house for Halloween.
3. You are trying to prepare for Survivor by teaching yourself to eat them.
4. You want to teach your kids a lesson about keeping their rooms clean.
5. Maybe said kids have grown up and you are trying to get them to move out.

Whatever reason, I cannot imagine...so disgusting. A mystery for sure!

Saturday, February 17, 2018

A MAJOR Snafu...

...with the kitchen reno.

So, I wanted a new refrigerator. We didn't NEED a new refrigerator, I just don't like the one we have. The worst part about that is I threw a little girl, spoiled brat kind of tantrum to get my way about buying it in the first place. I wanted something different as we'd already had two side-by-sides during our married life. This one is only 8 years old and still looks like brand new.
Once we got it, there were things about it that I didn't like right away. 
1. There isn't enough room to store tall things. In order to make space for ketchup bottles, juice. wine and other tall things, you would have to make another shelf so tight that it looks stupid. The door can hold a gallon of milk, a creamer and a bottle of wine--that's it. There are only 3 racks on the door.
2. It has this really cool pull out drawer that we thought we were going to love. Actually, we do love it. But the problem is in the design. It is not user friendly. Everyone has a tendency to pull it out from the top. The door has pulled off so many times that it finally snapped. Butch was able to fix it, but finally put a label on it to pull from the bottom. Aggravating.
3. The freezer isn't big enough. Okay, that wasn't a problem until Easter weekend. That's when I accidentally left the door open of our big freezer in the mud room. Rotted meat, disgusting liquid all over, and the smell---you get the picture! Butch took it apart and cleaned it thoroughly. He even took the door off and carried it out to the driveway and took that apart too. He cleaned everything including the rubber gaskets with bleach. Still, it smelled. We decided that we'd just get rid of it. 

Fast forward, to the new kitchen. We decided to go back to a side-by-side. Since I picked out the last refrigerator, I told Butch he could pick this one. Here it is and so far (less than 24 hours) we love it!
So our plan was to have the old refrigerator moved to the mud room---as we could use more refrigerator space when the gang's all here. We were going to have the freezer hauled off. We've managed to live without it for 9 months. That's when the problems started.

Nicky noted that the refrigerator was much taller than the freezer. There is a shelf above that would have to be removed. It was basically painted in after 35 years. Butch got that out. That's when he realized that the door size of the mud room is smaller than the refrigerator---even if you removed the door AND refrigerator doors. 

Now we have to quickly come up with plan "B". We decided to have the "old" refrigerator moved to the garage and still have the freezer hauled off. When I went to check the freezer, it didn't smell at all---even after being turned off for 9 months! So, I did the only logical thing. I turned it back on to see if that would somehow make the smell return. It didn't. 

So the bottom line is we bought a new refrigerator we didn't really need for the extra freezer space which we really don't need now that the old freezer is working perfectly well and have a perfectly good refrigerator in the garage that will rarely be used and get all disgusting out there just is case one of the girls needs a refrigerator in a couple of years or maybe we'll just go with plan "C" and sell it now and get it over with. Sheesh!

Oh and by the way, I told Butch that we are using our new refrigerator as our guide to when it will be time to move. When it dies, it's time to get out of this big house! This is the LAST refrigerator we intend to buy! 

Friday, February 16, 2018

Friday Funnies

 Have you heard about the new strain of flu? It's called the "MOM Flu." It's like the flu except nobody cares!

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

What I Buy Wednesdays

Happy Valentine's Day! This is appropriate since I've bought myself (and Butch) some new things for the new kitchen.
My new Induction cookware---and it's dishwasher safe! I don't baby anything! I've already talked about my new induction cooktop. Here's a good definition: Induction cooking heats a cooking vessel by magnetic induction, instead of by thermal conduction from a flame, or an electrical heating element. Because inductive heating directly heats the vessel, very rapid increases in temperature can be achieved. 

You can even do this:
Yep, you can cook on top of newspaper. That might be good when cooking pasta or potatoes in case they boil over. Oh wait, I don't have to do that since nothing can cook on the surface! Easy wipe off cleaning! I know I'm bragging here, but I'm sure I'm going to hate the black surface as far as keeping it looking pristine. I hate black, but it didn't come in white---nor did any other cooktops.

I bought an air fryer! Can't wait to try that out. Little to no oil to get fried foods that are lower calorie and taste the same. We'll see...This one was recommended by one of the tv chef personalities that I've already forgotten.
I needed a larger pot than came with the set. I need extra large cookware when the family is here.
I also got a new rug. Wayfair is absolutely the best place to get reasonably priced (make that cheap) rugs!

The new pendant lights I ordered for over the stove came in this week too. I always thought pendant lights were little. Apparently if you hang anything over a counter or stove, they become pendant lights. These are not little! You'll just have to wait to see what they look like.

We also bought our new refrigerator. We are going to put our other "new" refrigerator in the mud room and get rid of the freezer. I don't need to stockpile frozen food any more. It will be nice to have the extra refrigerator space. I've never had that.

Now for a couple things I'm keeping for the new kitchen:
Love my old window. Since I've gotten rid of the baker's rack, I'll be able to lower it. I might keep that wreath or make a new one. Hmmm. Maybe I'll make a new one with the vintage cooking utensils that I no longer have a place for. Yeah, that's what I'm going to do.
I was going to get a new chandelier, but I still love this one. I've decided to go without the little shades anymore. It's pretty bright, so we could put less wattage in it if we want. Look at the nice shadows it makes on the ceiling. Speaking of ceilings, I'm keeping my blue ceiling. It will be re-painted, but it's still blue. 

Well that's it for what I bought this week.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Tuesday Thoughts about...

...little purses! I love them! Once I no longer had little kids and didn't need to have assorted things for them (toys, drinks, snack, diapers, wipes) I was happy to go to a smaller purse. Plus, I didn't miss the weight of a big purse. I've been able to reduce what I carry to what I actually use. It has distressed me to have to go back to a bit of a larger purse just because of my Epi pens. I only use crossbody bags now and you know why!! No joke.

When I was in St. Louis, my cousin was carrying this little beauty.
 She manages to carry all of her essentials in this little thing.
 Oh my---I didn't notice that huge wad of cash!
Now that's the way to go.

I'm posting this because Connie has been trying to downsize. Her "downsize" is about the size of what I carry. She's having trouble getting used to it. I realize everyone carries what is important to them. But when you narrow it down, it's not that much---especially if you focus on what you actually use.

Here's what I carry:
It's about 10" square and about 2" wide.
Here are my essentials:
1.A notepad---I always have random thoughts that need to be jotted down. If not, 5 minutes later, I've forgotten.
2. Eyeglass case. I't pretty thick because I carry my glasses and sunglasses in it.
3. Keys. Even though I have that keyless ignition, I still have to have my keys. Actually, I don't really like the keyless "thing." All that means is that when I get home I have to fumble around in my purse trying to find them. When I had to have them for my ignition, they were always in my hand. I don't really see the point.
4. Granted, I carry a really tiny wallet. I have all the essential cards (credit, driver's license, medical, etc.) and money in it. The zippered coin pouch holds more than you would think. Actually it forces me to use coins once in awhile. I don't carry photos---why bother. We all have our phones with us anyway.
5. Pen for notepa--really essential. No sense in having thoughts without a pen! Plus, how many times have I been caught in the grocery store with my list and no pen to cross things off. Can you spell "a-n-n-o-y-i-n-g?"
6. Checkbook. I know. This seems downright archaic. But I need to write checks in exactly two places---my hairdresser and my frame lady. They don't take cards. Plus I still love my "croc" cover.
7. Those are my Epi pens. They're kind of big, but I have to carry them at all times. I just keep them in my purse. There have been a couple times when I realized I didn't have my purse with me. Once on the boat. When I realized it, Butch told me he had put them in the cooler! And I don't carry a purse to the beach. When I was with my sisters, I told Joyce she'd have to be the one to run if I needed them! After that, I put them in my beach bag.
It all fits in quite nicely. I even have room to smuggle in a bottle of water or candy to the movie. Even if they check purses, they don't bother to look under the Epis.

I have a zippered compartment that contains kleenex, Blistex, lipstick, aspirins, hand lotion, perfume pen and Equal. I like the outside pocked because it's easy to slip my phone in and I always know where it is. I have a few purses that don't have the outside pocket. They are okay as they have an inside pocket, but I like the outside one better.

So there you have my thoughts on little purses. What size do you carry?

Monday, February 12, 2018

Mystery Monday

A couple weeks ago, Stephanie, Mindy and I went to see "iTonya"---oops (too many Apple products)---"I Tonya." I couldn't believe all of the extra charges on the receipt. Connie and I went to see "Winchester" on Tuesday. I have no idea what a VIP upcharge is--we certainly were not treated in any sort of special way. This was at the AMC theater in Cool Springs. There are several reasons I'm not going back.

1. They cost more than the Regal theaters---the tickets at Regal are 9.50---period---no extra charges.
2. You have to get your own butter for the popcorn which means you can't get it in the middle. Your only choice is to completely soak the top and hope it seeps down, or put the regular amount and then the middle and bottom are completely dry. I hate that.
3. It's nearly impossible to figure out what row you are on. Two other ladies came in and were searching. We told them to just pick two seats since there was no one in the theater. After sitting down, one of them was so bothered that she came back out and kept trying to figure it out. After a  search she told us that the letter was on the carpet. Somehow, Connie and I had managed to end up in the correct seats---not that it mattered. Those other 2 ladies and us were the only ones in the theater.
4. Although I can use my Movie Pass---the AMC in Cool Springs will not give me the reward points. The AMC in Bellevue does so I don't understand why it's not a clear policy for all AMC's. Plus, they are getting paid for the movie, so I don't understand why they wouldn't give the points. If anything, it would encourage more movie-going.
5. The final reason I'm not going back is that when you plan to have lunch there, at the regular concession stand, your choices are popcorn, nachos or a hotdog (no fries). If you want more choices, you have to be in one of the theaters where they have the waitresses and "dine-in" feature. We would have liked that, but our movie was not showing in one of them. It ended up being popcorn for me and a hotdog for Connie.

My take on that whole theater--unfriendly, uncooperative and expensive! Not going back and it's NO mystery why!

Sunday, February 11, 2018

A Few Things

I've had quite a few random photos just waiting to be blogged, so here goes:
Nancy and I have started on a new needlepoint. This one is a row of cookbooks. I'm designing my own stitch guide for us. So far, so good.
Okay, so Butch and I do travel a lot. We get travel brochures nearly every day. But this one takes the cake. It's about the size of a phone book! I can't believe how much it must cost the company to publish these---not only money, but trees! What a waste. Just lower your prices by 100 bucks and save yourself millions!
Mindy is sporting the new necklace I gave her for Christmas. I'm pretty good at picking jewelry for the girls. They like jewelry and they like what I pick. Same goes for shoes. I told them this year that it was easy to pick shoes for them. I just pick out what I would love for myself, but can't wear!
On the other hand, now that I've had my "fusions", I'm back in business in the shoe department. I have several cute pairs now. I picked a rainy day to wear my new red boots, but it ended up not raining!
These two cuties are my cousins. I'm not even sure which number---and certainly can't keep that "once removed" business straight, but I'm pretty sure I might be able to marry them.
We went to a new sushi place on Friday night. They had this centerpiece. Morgan said the cat was a sushi roll because of the rice on the bottom. I'm pretty sure that we didn't order anything that contained cat. At least we hope not!
Mindy and I are watching the American Crime show. This season it's about Versace. Mindy sent me this picture of her and her friend, Rachel taken in front of his mansion a few years ago. Had they known these were the steps he was murdered on, they wouldn't have been so gleeful! The show is really good!
Stephanie and Nicky invited us over for a football game a couple weeks ago. Butch and I were trying to take our FIRST selfie ever. The "kids" all decided to photo bomb us!

Butch just got a fine new ride. He got another Buick Lacrosse. It's pretty awesome with so many features. It even has that new self park. He hasn't tried that yet. It seems scary to me, but I'd have to try it a few times to have confidence in it. I could use that when parking in the garage at the movie theater. It would save me all the back and forth!

Stephanie sent me this beautiful bouquet of flowers this week. It was an unexpected surprise and definitely gave me a lift. But...
...it was the note that really meant a lot. She is so articulate! This really says it all! I love my family!

That's about it for my "few things" post. Hoping you have a great Sunday!

Saturday, February 10, 2018

A to Z Books

Author you’ve read the most books from.
Now that depends on the time in my life. Early on, I read The Bobbsey Twins, Nancy Drew Mysteries and Agatha Christie. I read every Stephen King in the 70's and 80's right up until It. That was too far out for me. Since then, I've read a few more and am back to loving him. I read anything by Jeffrey Archer (and continue to read him), James Patterson, Barbara Taylor Bradford. Most recently, my most favorite authors are Jodi Picoult, Kristin Hannah and Liane Moriarty. I love any books with twists you don't see coming. 

Best sequel ever.
That's a hard one. It seem like a lot of the books I read these days are series. I don't think I can pick a single sequel.

Currently reading.
Betty Smith's A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. I read this back in high school---not for school, but because I wanted to. I loved it then, so am happy to re-read it for book club. Liking it all over again! I just finished Promise me Dad by Joe Biden. It's pretty sad and hitting very close to home right now.

Drink of choice while reading.
Hot tea---definitely or water.

E-reader or physical book?
Totally love my Kindle---never thought I would, but I do.

Fictional character you probably would have actually dated in high school.
I would have liked to date Romeo or Oliver Barrett the IV, but my heart would have gone to Heathcliff!

Glad you gave this book a chance.
There are many books I never would have read if it weren't for my book clubs. A few that stand out in my mind as books I never would have chosen are The Sparrow and The Hunger Games series. 

Hidden gem book.
Tattoos of the Heart by Gregory Boyle has to be my favorite. It's about the power of boundless compassion and is the most beautifully written book I've ever read. It's 5 stars of over 1200 reviews!

Important moment in your reading life.
I guess that would have to be when I was reading The Winter Garden. I had to keep stopping because I was crying so hard. Butch came along and said, "what's the matter, are your allergies bothering you?" I said, "are you kidding me? We've been married 40 years. You know I don't have allergies! It's my book!" Another was while reading My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult. I was crying on the patio as Butch came around from the garage to see what was going on! I LOVE books that move me!

Just finished.
A Gentleman in Moscow. Wow, considering it was so highly rated, it was a difficult read for me. Luckily, it all came together in the end. (I started this post a couple weeks ago.)

Kinds of books you won’t read.
I don't read fluff. I hate that and consider them a waste of time. I want to learn something. My preferred genre is historical fiction (or non).

Longest book you’ve ever read.
Atlas Shrugged---although anything by Stephen King is just as long. With Atlas Shrugged, I felt like it was an accomplishment. If you want to understand the difference between republicans and democrats, read this book. You can really see both sides.

Major book hangover because of…
My Sister's Keeper. I sobbed so much and couldn't get it out of my mind for days. Love books like that.

Number of bookcases you own.
Bookcases---heck, I have an entire library. Plus, I have books in every room!

One book you have read multiple times.
Sometimes I've re-read a book for book club if it's been a few years. The only other books I've read multiple times were To Kill a Mockingbird as a teenager and Wuthering Heights from teen to adulthood (actually, I've only read it three times).

Preferred place to read.
In front of the fireplace, in the tub, in bed, in the recliner, Starbucks and in my car.

Quote from a book you’ve read that inspires you.
I'm not good at remembering quotes. Even if I had a favorite, I'm sure I would butcher it in the re-quoting!

Reading regret.
I guess my only reading regret would be my obsessive nature that won't allow me to quit a book once I've started. I hate the feeling at the end of a book that I've just wasted so much time. Time I could have been reading something good! If A Gentleman in Moscow wasn't for book club and so highly rated, I would have quit that several times!

Series you started and need to finish.
I'm in the middle of The Seven Sister series. I liked the first two books, but didn't love them. Since my book club keeps picking them, I've just finished book 3---The Shadow Sister--my favorite so far. Now, I have to read the rest---when they come out. I love Ken Follett too.

Three of your all-time favourite books.
That's really hard. There are so many books that I have loved. These three are by no means the only favorites I have. Wuthering Heights, My Sister's Keeper and The Nightingale.

Under what circumstances do you find it difficult to read?
I can't read easily in the pool. I'm always afraid that I'll doze off and drop my Kindle in the water.

Very excited for this release more than all the others.
I'm looking forward to whatever Jodi Picoult is doing next.

Worst bookish habit.
Sneaking off to read while on vacation.

Your latest book purchase.
Now that I'm using the library---and borrowing book club books from Stephanie, I haven't purchased a book in a year. However, since Stephanie is sharing with me, I'll buy half of the book club books.

Zzz-snatcher book (latest book that kept you up way late).
This is not a problem for me. I get sleepy when I read at night. That's why I use reading in bed to unwind.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Throwback Thursday

Last year:

What a difference a year makes! Good bye prednisone!
What a difference 20 years make!!

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

What I Buy Wednesdays

Actually, Butch bought this mascara for me from Kohl's. I read a blog article somewhere about the best mascaras on the market. I don't have many eyelashes left (you may remember that I said they had all fallen and taken root on my chin!). This mascara was highly rated. Butch shops Kohl's, so I knew he'd be all over it! It's $24.00 and worth every cent!
My Stitch Fix box came in. I'm loving this. It's a surprise whenever it comes---like Christmas!
Here's what I got this month. Fashionable clothes at very reasonable prices! Plus you get a 25% discount if you keep everything. I did.
And the shoes! I've liked every pair they've sent. I've only sent one pair back because they were silver sandals and I already had a pair of cute ones.
 I saw this purse in the window while walking the mall last week. I thought it would go good with the shoes, but I didn't buy it. I prefer the crossbody bags now. You know, so I can keep my hands free to catch myself when I fall. Notice I didn't say "if?"
 I did order a pair of white Keds on sale.
These were on sale too and I just couldn't resist.
Who knew? I had no idea that Keds partnered with Kate Spade---my favorite designer. The shoes were the same price as regular Keds (well, the sale price that is).  The polka dots---so Kate Spade!

What did you buy this week?