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De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019

Stilly River Sage 13 Nov 19 - 03:45 PM
Charmion 13 Nov 19 - 10:49 AM
Stilly River Sage 12 Nov 19 - 11:39 AM
Dorothy Parshall 10 Nov 19 - 06:13 PM
Stilly River Sage 10 Nov 19 - 01:46 AM
Charmion 09 Nov 19 - 10:13 PM
Stilly River Sage 09 Nov 19 - 07:12 PM
Stilly River Sage 09 Nov 19 - 12:43 AM
Stilly River Sage 08 Nov 19 - 07:18 PM
Dorothy Parshall 07 Nov 19 - 07:12 PM
Stilly River Sage 06 Nov 19 - 05:16 PM
Donuel 06 Nov 19 - 06:38 AM
Stilly River Sage 05 Nov 19 - 12:15 PM
Charmion 04 Nov 19 - 08:59 AM
Stilly River Sage 03 Nov 19 - 09:25 PM
Dorothy Parshall 03 Nov 19 - 08:57 PM
Stilly River Sage 03 Nov 19 - 03:43 PM
LilyFestre 03 Nov 19 - 02:52 PM
Stilly River Sage 02 Nov 19 - 01:09 PM
LilyFestre 02 Nov 19 - 11:54 AM
Stilly River Sage 01 Nov 19 - 05:16 PM
Stilly River Sage 31 Oct 19 - 04:07 PM
Stilly River Sage 31 Oct 19 - 11:10 AM
mg 30 Oct 19 - 07:12 PM
Dorothy Parshall 30 Oct 19 - 06:48 PM
Stilly River Sage 30 Oct 19 - 08:50 AM
Stilly River Sage 29 Oct 19 - 10:43 PM
Dorothy Parshall 29 Oct 19 - 05:55 PM
Stilly River Sage 29 Oct 19 - 05:39 PM
Stilly River Sage 28 Oct 19 - 12:37 PM
Charmion 28 Oct 19 - 09:10 AM
Stilly River Sage 27 Oct 19 - 11:49 AM
Stilly River Sage 27 Oct 19 - 01:09 AM
mg 26 Oct 19 - 08:38 PM
Stilly River Sage 26 Oct 19 - 04:22 PM
Dorothy Parshall 26 Oct 19 - 11:31 AM
Charmion 26 Oct 19 - 11:20 AM
Stilly River Sage 25 Oct 19 - 11:00 AM
Stilly River Sage 23 Oct 19 - 07:13 PM
Stilly River Sage 23 Oct 19 - 10:27 AM
Stilly River Sage 22 Oct 19 - 11:24 AM
Donuel 22 Oct 19 - 08:53 AM
Dorothy Parshall 21 Oct 19 - 07:37 PM
Stilly River Sage 21 Oct 19 - 12:51 PM
Jon Freeman 21 Oct 19 - 11:25 AM
Charmion 21 Oct 19 - 10:32 AM
Stilly River Sage 20 Oct 19 - 10:10 PM
Jon Freeman 20 Oct 19 - 04:52 PM
Stilly River Sage 20 Oct 19 - 02:36 PM
Jon Freeman 20 Oct 19 - 11:51 AM
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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Nov 19 - 03:45 PM

I can never seem to get my homemade versions to assume and maintain the shape of the buns I visualized when I started the task. I bake bread, dinner rolls, cinnamon rolls, all sorts of yeast and/or baking powder and baking soda quick breads, but I still enjoy getting a hot fresh tandoori or Iraqi flat bread, and Mexican bolillo rolls are pretty special when purchased fresh. All of these I freeze while they're still in their prime. I make pita bread, corn and wheat tortillas, etc, but I also buy them when I know they're made on the premises in the same way I would (but someone else is doing the work and the cost is reasonable).

I'm headed over to get another tall bin, this time to put the long mailing tubes into, I have quite a few of them here with maps and posters.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Charmion
Date: 13 Nov 19 - 10:49 AM

I made three dozen whole-wheat hamburger-type buns yesterday, so we have bread for a while. I profoundly resent it when bread I made with my own fair fingers goes mouldy, so I started making buns that get thawed two or three at a time.

Mind you, making buns is a damned nuisance mitigated only by good tools: a dough scraper for splitting the great mound of yeasty stuff on the worktop, and a digital scale to ensure that all the buns are the same size.

Of course, I could just buy bread. But what would be the fun in that?


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 12 Nov 19 - 11:39 AM

While making a fresh produce run at my favorite discount gourmet grocery I found a tall Rubbermaid bin that has a square footprint. This will go to the sun room and I may go get another (they're only $8). This'll allow some of the overflow of packing materials to be corralled and out of puppy reach.

I made a huge push last night to find and apply all of the edits to one of the essays for a journal I'm working on. When the author is making a few small editing changes it isn't fair to the document editor/designer to send a whole new document with the changes unmarked. I'm not going to just drop that document into the InDesign page, I need to know the specific changes to add to the existing InDesign document and I'm sure as hell not going to re-read the two side-by-side all the way through to try to locate them! The amount of work needed to prepare any text to put in the Adobe software is huge. The amount of understanding of these academics to the design process is puny. I finally got her to photograph the pages she wrote on so I could FIND the changes on the new document and type them into the design document. Doh! I've enjoyed the little bit of extra income, but next year I'm going to pass this off to a friend the editor knows and suggest she double the fee.

It's a gorgeous bright morning and the low overnight was down to 24o. It's too cold to do much out there, but everything is lovely to look at. Last night I put a new dog jacket on Cookie to take her walk before bedtime and she fussed for a minute or two then settled down, I think recognizing what it was for. But she would shred it if I left it on her a moment longer than needed. These dogs with a fine one-layer coat do benefit from that reinforcement though she puts out enough heat normally that she'd be okay without. It's a human thing, putting on a jacket in cold weather.

Sweet potatoes simmering; the batch from the freezer didn't survive the thaw last week. I measure them into take-out containers and freeze them for baking later. I have one serving of my hearty tomato vegetable soup left and then I'll make a lentil batch. I love having soup handy for quick meals during the week.

Next Saturday is an e-waste drop-off event at my university and I'm going to have a large box of stuff. I'll start putting it in the back of the SUV now to remove the tripping hazard in a couple of rooms.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 10 Nov 19 - 06:13 PM

Dupont:

YAY for company! R has made the hall and spare room look good! De-cluttered his reading area as well! And said he would bring home wood to close off the stairwell. Each part of addition heats individually (3 rooms and hall) so I turned up the hall some; will turn it up more when stairway is covered and I can take the foam mattress out of the doorway. That was about keeping heat in house but also keeping any spores or whatever from the basement out of Den where I sit and read/computer. Will turn up heat in guest room on Weds - only the cousin is coming due to bad weather, and not til Weds.

So, I started putting out pottery on extended DR table. Three of us can eat in the K. Today, the warmest for a while, I brought all the pottery in from back deck and placed it on church pew in hall. Am gradually moving it out of boxes onto table, which is mostly full already. Will wait 'til cuz leaves to put up card tables for the rest.

I collected most of garden tools to deck and cleared it up as much as possible. Getting ready for impending snow. Glad to have snow tires on; when R went to get flat fixed no one could do it as all the tire places were up to changing folks to winter tires. He and gang did it themselves and it seems to be holding.

Re-potted small ficus which lives in Bathroom. And, finally, planted the new lavender in the new garden, where it can drape over a large rock R brought home. He really likes the new garden and is looking for more rocks to go around it. I never saw a draping lavender before but it is lovely. Frost has done in most everything, but still some colour showing in frosted flowering plants. No obvious signs of squirrel depredation! Inside, Beast has one new flower, hibiscus two, and a number of ratty geraniums are blooming in spite of me. I shall groom them better through the winter,and feed them. The one red mini rose bloom continues to be lovely!

Major shopping yesterday; I overdid it. Have 6 cauliflower - will cook and freeze - mashed for pasta substitute, on a cookie sheet cut into squares of appropriate size, so I can break it up after frozen, and bag it until needed.

My whole being is delighted to be back on real time; it just feels so right. I feel better in every way.

Thinking of Pete and Michelle.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Nov 19 - 01:46 AM

Well, it is unused change in that it tends to be emptied out of the coin purse at intervals and end up in a fancy can, so it's usually out of circulation. I guess I can carry a little baggie of those coins with me and when I'm in a store that has one of those change trays with the self-pay register, I can off-load it.

It took some ingenuity to re-do the brace that was included with the ceiling junction box for that light fixture, but the original wouldn't fit so I finally managed a different one (with leftover stuff from putting up a curtain rod, I think) and drilling a couple of extra support screws through the side into the joist. I had to tie it into the old brace left from the brittle junction box that I removed.

Between the fence construction and the installation of that ceiling fixture, at one point it felt like I had every screw driver I own sitting on various horizontal surfaces around the kitchen and garage (and I have a LOT of screw drivers - my own plus what came from Dad's house).

That light is a thing of beauty after all of that work.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Charmion
Date: 09 Nov 19 - 10:13 PM

Stilly, there is no such thing as “extra” change.

It’s all money. Dosh. Legal tender.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Nov 19 - 07:12 PM

The junction box operation has continued, the brace that was attached to it is too solidly in place to remove so I have to figure out how to attach the new box to it.

The day was nice so I took down the old fence panel and gate and have two of the new crossmembers in place (though I have to take the first one back down and cut a few inches off because I forgot to shorten it to the proper length). I stopped when mosquitoes came out (yes, they're year-round here in Texas). Tomorrow will take another hour or two and it'll be finished. I have more fence to do that attaches to this, but I'm doing the work on a budget, one panel at a time.

This week I'm staging a dirt and dog hair intervention in this house. The vacuum is back in great shape and it's going to get a lot of use.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 09 Nov 19 - 12:43 AM

The round fixture junction box replacement was only $2.61. Modest, and paid for mostly with the small change I've wanted to weed out of my coin purse (they have one of those change-counting registers where you drop in the handful, not one at a time.) So, extra change decluttered.

A big batch of stuff is going over to Goodwill this weekend.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 08 Nov 19 - 07:18 PM

The light in the laundry room was too dim so I took back the new bulb and wasn't able to find any to fit it that are brighter, so I picked up another fixture like the new LED light in the front hall (after the ceiling replacement). When I took down the old fixture the junction box under it crumbled; it was in bad shape in 2002 when I had a new one put up there, and the electrician got it to stay in place with really long screws, but since then the bakelite-like fixture became too brittle. Most of it seemed to fall down my neckline when I moved the fixture. Junction boxes are inexpensive, and I'm hoping that $3 replaces easily on a solid surface. I don't want to have to call the electrician.

The vacuum is still not in prime shape, so after running a rope with a rag through to hose to completely empty it again I took it apart. I found a message about losing suction if not routinely cleaning out various filters, so I pulled and washed them and they're now drying (out of reach of any puppies that would destroy them). I have company coming weekend after next (Mudcatters!) so I want to get a jump on this dust and dog hair.

That same visit is inspiring organization of some of the stuff on my dining room table and sunroom.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 07 Nov 19 - 07:12 PM

Dupont:

That is a Super Pup! Too smart!

I see ads about musty houses have hit us. Since last I wrote, I got to the point of thinking I was dying - any minute I would sop breathing. Seriously, I woke up Tues am and was crying because I did not want to leave R with all my stuff to deal with. I broke down and phoned my health consultant who quickly diagnosed mold. I brought out the air cleaner so it is blowing clean air at me and seriously upped the Pau d'Arco intake. Woke up Weds feeling fine. R will give me an argument bu I believe during the mold poisoning at the mill a few years ago and the time on Whidbey about 13 years ago. Fall, close doors and windows, mold takes ownership!

So, de-humidifier in basement -yay!; commitment by R to close off basement and put door between main house and addition. SOON! as his cousin and family arrive on Tues - R will tidy up! My son and family arrive 21 Dec, weather permitting. That was going to be our time at Beaver but R will enjoy showing Taun and 2 sons his various machines; Taun worked for R when he was 20 - figuring out how to repair machines.

I cooked a large pot of cranberries with honey - might need more honey! Now working on doing more apples. They have been neglected as I lost energy over the last week or so.

Left the BF table yesterday when R came back in - truck has flat tire - can I use your car? (Not a chance!) I grabbed coat and drove him to important meeting in the city - and he was on time! As I was already in the city, I considered what I could do usefully. At Market, hot choc mix that R likes (he had bought one the day before but - even if I were a mind reader, I would avoid his complex mind!) Grocery: a couple bags of the cookies he likes since I have not found this prosaic brand near home. Mall: navy blue bath towel and several navy blue wash clothes - preferable to getting annoyed each day when the lighter coloured ones turn black. His work is often VERY dirty - hence, so is his face! There is no way he is going to wash properly and RINSE it! So - stress reduction! Checked out a few shops which had nothing desirable and finally went home. I had texted him twice that I was still in town but E had turned his phone off for the meeting and R forgot to turn it on - as usual.

So, we had snow last night - just enough to be treacherous. I would not go out the door until it melted enough for me to go on back porch for apples and planters.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 05:16 PM

I shouldn't have said or written anything about a no-spend month; appliances large and small are lining up with issues needing to be addressed.

The puppy comes up with more odd stuff to drag into the yard that I'm going to have to fill a bag of things to take to Goodwill based upon the working plan that I may not be using X now but if the puppy tears it up I'll have to throw it out. So I might as well dispose of it and let someone else use it. She pulled a thing off of the wall this morning while apparently jumping for something else. Maybe a ball and chain would slow her down. :-/

I'm not sharing any of the story, but it looks like Gnu is headed home tomorrow. And very glad of it.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Donuel
Date: 06 Nov 19 - 06:38 AM

Did the fallen leaf cleanup duty. woof


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Nov 19 - 12:15 PM

I screwed down the door trim that was pulling away from the jamb (due to moisture) on the outside garage door, and trimmed a tree that I always seem to end up with branches in my hair when I mow (it has thorns that often grab my ballcap in passing). Today the job is two part - pick up all of the dog toys spread around the yard and keep them in one place long enough to mow.

My lantern has the correct battery now and is charging. The wrong battery goes back today at the same time I make a run over to Tractor Supply to pick up dog food.

I'm continuing to try to puppy-proof the house. She knows when she's in trouble and simply walks into her kennel when I wave whatever she has destroyed at her. Today she didn't wait for me to discover it; when I walked into the living room there was a destroyed sock and she was already in her kennel. It's really difficult to stay angry at such a sharp little pooch!

I've sent a note to WYSIWYG and Hardy. No news after five weeks is troubling. On the other hand, I've been in regular contact with Gnu who still has a long way to go, but is communicating much better. It's his story to tell, and he says he'll do so when he feels recovered enough. I have both addresses if anyone wants to send a card.

It's difficult to stay in a no-spend mode at Costco. I needed eggs, and they have a good price for 2-dozen organic cage-free eggs, and technically everything I bought I needed - various vitamins. It's the bulk bit that makes it all cost more in a fell-swoop, though it averages out pretty well. I already have pretty much everything else I need to start on some baking for the season (and the breads freeze very well).

I have rearranged some more shelves in my office that had sat fairly empty and were slowly gathering random stuff since I restored the room last summer.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Charmion
Date: 04 Nov 19 - 08:59 AM

In my opinion, the spurtle is the world's least efficient cooking implement, and it survives only because far too many people suffer from Highland romanticism in the wake of reading Walter Scott or talking to their Scots grannie. I favour a narrow silicone not-quite-spatula for oatmeal, as its flexible edge clears the porridge from the sides of the pot on the first swipe.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Nov 19 - 09:25 PM

I diagnosed the problem with the vacuum correctly - there was a partial blockage half-way through the hose. I finally settled on using a spirtle to drop through the hose and gradually push out the wad of hair stuck to some kind of plastic clip. I've never used a spirtle to make oatmeal (though I'm making it regularly again now that it's autumn weather). I'm not sure what you'd actually do with it that is more efficient than a wider wooden spoon? It has been rinsed off and is drying before going back into the ornamental pitcher full of other wooden kitchen implements.

I moved four potted plants out onto the driveway in front of the garage; I haven't cleared out space in the greenhouse for them yet. Peppers and tomatoes and eggplants are still forming and growing.

This afternoon I had to reinforce the compost siding (a plastic wrap-around thing meant specifically to be used for compost) because the puppy figured out how to collapse one side and walk right in. That dog does the math - as sweet as the face is there is a little devil inside! After that I hauled all of those now-recycled pasta sauce jars and lids to the village recycle bins. There were two excellent sturdy milk crates in one of them that yes, I grabbed and brought home. I'll clean them up on general principles and probably use them in the greenhouse to prop things on or store tools in.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 03 Nov 19 - 08:57 PM

Dupont:

All in pretty good shape here. Quiet weekend with R going to work part of each day and getting small bit done here. I had a weird day yesterday: I was so intent on finishing a novel, I ignored the facts that I was having chills and was repeatedly falling asleep! I wanted to go to the library before 5 but at 4:15, finished the book and went to bed! R fended for himself when he got home and I was fine this am.

The K is well enough organized that R is doing more than he used to, which is rather nice. I concocted another pot of pureed soup today and w had it with some chicken breast. This soup thing is cool! I just put in all the root veggies that I get from the Farm, some seasonings and a dollop of solid chick broth and it comes out yummy!

Brought in the last geranium today. The mini rose I picked up at the grocery is a mess - the buds keep drying out and falling off; I have been careful not to over water but suspect it was maltreated previously.

Hope Pete gets some clear news soon; it is terrible to be unknowing.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 03 Nov 19 - 03:43 PM

That does sound like a horrible one-time oncologist visit - and after all of your research and recovery from your own cancer, there's a lot you already understand. And puttering around town while Pete is at work sounds like a nice day for you and Jeremiah. Congratulations on the sewing room; mine is a huge project awaiting my attention, and I continue to make note of project ideas I have for the contents of that room.

At Goodwill I found a silverware organizer with a particularly long footprint to put in one of the kitchen drawers and now the skewers and various long thin things are organized and tongs and such that don't fit are in the rest of the drawer not filled by the tray. A few things never used and long-forgotten have been discarded. The new freezer seems to have inspired a general thinning and organizing of the rest of the kitchen along with the pantry.

Sticks and branches in the back yard are being stuffed into a trashcan for the curb tomorrow. I've had lots of canine help, not all of it useful. I also trimmed some low-hanging limbs I'm tired of snagging in my hair when I mow. There will be one last mow of the season then the dormant lawn will look pretty good until about February.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: LilyFestre
Date: 03 Nov 19 - 02:52 PM

Pete opted to stay home yesterday so I spent the day in my sewing room/catch all room. Eight bags were loaded into my car for Sally's and several bags of trash went out as well (old paperwork that is no longer needed/tubes of wrapping paper that had gotten crushed, scraps of fabric that are never going to get used, etc). I made a considerable dent. I emptied two of the bookshelves, dusted everything and put things back in a more organized fashion....that part of my sewing room really had become a catch all where things were just thrown to be tended with later.

Regarding the oncologist...he was nice enough but I don't see the need for us to have seen him 3 times. He read the report off the computer, explained what things meant (most of which we both already understood). I would think oncology would make the decision about radiation but not always. Also, I am familiar with firing doctors. I had one oncologist who stepped in once while my regular oncologist was out. I asked him what the symptoms of returning ovarian cancer would be and he said, "You want to know? It will go to your lungs then your brain and then you will die." I told him that was quite enough and I'm glad I wasn't a new cancer patient because that would have removed all hope. I got up off the table and left. I also reported him. F*cker.

Anyway...Jeremiah does not have school tomorrow so I have taken the day off and we will go to work with Pete. He will go to his office and we will putter about the town for the day...probably meeeting up for lunch and then I can drive us all home if he is too tired.

I have my own endocrinology appointment coming up next week. All my bloodwork looks to be in order...A1C is still a bit high but still showing signs of working it's way down.

Happy Sunday!

Michelle


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 02 Nov 19 - 01:09 PM

Sometimes you run into doctors who just don't click - when my daughter was in the hospital for a blood disorder the doctor on call who took her case was so off-putting that when we were given the name of someone else who had looked at the case I called there and asked to follow-up with them. The appointment manager said we needed to stick with the first doctor, and I told her we weren't going to have anything to do with him any more, his bedside manner stunk and he was a jerk. That was enough to get us in with a much more helpful doctor.

Family medical leave is so important - I have a friend who was fired for missing work because at the time a family crisis erupted he didn't have time to fill out all of the paperwork.

I just finished disassembling a lovely CD changer and discovered it isn't repairable - the weak point in the system is the circuit board behind the control panel and the past users pushed one button so hard they cracked the board and the circuits are broken. Too bad. Back to Goodwill it goes. CD changers used to be commonplace but they're not around as much now and those that are new are very expensive. Now to go take apart my vacuum cleaner and remove what is probably a blockage near the bottom of the hose.

To those who lurk, reading the thread but not posting, good luck with your work. You're invited to share, we love to hear about how you're doing, though participation here isn't necessary.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: LilyFestre
Date: 02 Nov 19 - 11:54 AM

It's a very lazy morning for me today. I slept in until 9:45am...unheard of! I suppose going back to work after 2 weeks off (to tend to Pete) and the end of the month usual rush....I'm just tuckered. I had to take one day off this week to take Pete to the oncologist. Depsite that, I was able to get in my full hours....can you say LONG days?

We found out that Pete is in the intermediate risk category which may qualify him for radiation. We didn't get any answers from oncology but were referred to an endocrinologist who specializes in this area. If he has radiation and IF it is not successful, THEN we go back to medical oncology. I personally think the oncology appointment was not useful or necessary this week or at any other time so far as he simply reads the results to us that we can access at home. While all the other oncologists in this office have a card with a specialty, his card just says oncologist. I think he may be a front line for the triage and then he passes people on. It's just unnerving because we went thinking we would finally have an answer as to if we can be finished with this and move on or if there is more ahead....we simply don't know. I am frustrated but Pete, as his usual self, is quite relaxed and laid back about it all.

Jeremiah dressed up as Harry Potter for Halloween this year...cute as a button he was! We only attend the local Trunk or Treating event. Maybe next year we will add the door to door fun. It's unbelievable how much candy he came home with.

Pete wants to go out and about today....I'm really wishing we were having an at home day as I'm pooped. He is supposed to head back to work on Monday...we'll see how that goes. He gets tired so very easily....I'm thinking it will have to be a gradual return to full time hours.

On a good note, my office has Paid Family Leave and I have already received a check for the days I've had off. I get 55% of my normal pay plus I am not at risk for losing my job for the time missed...I think that is outstanding! It was a lot of paperwork but well worth it!

Hoping everyone is well.

Michelle


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 01 Nov 19 - 05:16 PM

After a flurry of month-end activity yesterday and today I'm going to aim at another no-spend November. It's the time to use up what's here and do a few small repairs on things I don't want to replace.

With nice weather predicted over the weekend I think it's time to mow the back, do a thorough policing the grounds (droppings) and at least one dog is going to get a bath. and all of them will get a good brushing.

The pantry got a good clear out today and after organizing canning jars quite a few "good jars" (from pasta sauce) and lids went into the recycle bin. I keep a few for things that go in the freezer, but lately I've just used canning jars for freezing and don't need to keep the old sauce jars. Lots of canned peaches that were in there too long are now in the compost, and I have some on-the-cusp of too old tomatoes I'll use up quickly in the next few weeks. They'd been buried and out of sight or they'd have been used long ago. All of this was to clear space where previously frozen things like rice, beans, flour, and pasta were stored for a while to kill any weevils before they hatch. In a warm climate, this is necessary. The kitchen is still cluttered with stuff that needs to be put away, but it's getting better.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 31 Oct 19 - 04:07 PM

After four hours (suggested time it takes to completely chill) I stuffed the cooler contents into the new freezer. I'll organize them more later. Should have worn mittens!

The bulk of the editing job is over but alas, much of the nice autumn weather has passed during that phase of deadline work, so I'll get out when I can to work on the yard. I took a big bag to the curb for trash today, which is more than I expected to get done this week.

I'm going to look at the greenhouse, see if I can get it closed up enough to put these plants out there (and then remember to water them) for the winter. Tomato, eggplant, peppers, and some flowers.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 31 Oct 19 - 11:10 AM

Huge declutter this morning as I emptied the contents of the 50-year-old upright freezer. There is a contractor bag in the trash can outside and I've tossed some stuff that I won't use or is very old (but was buried in there and would have been discarded anyway at the next normal defrost). Two coolers are stuffed as is the side-by-side freezer on the fridge. I'm not going to defrost this thing, it's going out the door full of ice.

It's freezing again now, but that period of defrost was so big it wasn't just the door left open, the big cold box is failing. So it's time. The delivery of the new one should be anytime in the next couple of hours. I don't think it will be as large as the old one, but I will be able to make due. A lot that came out was just stuff parked in there, flour, rice, baking mixes, that always go in for a while to kill any eggs in the mix. You have to do that down here or have weevils. They can all come out now and go into the pantry shelves.

Dogs will be put into the yard, I think it's warming up enough (though last night we had a hard freeze that knocked out part of the garden - the plants not in pots I could carry into the garage.)

I had a bag of ice cubes of chicken stock in there; they softened enough to kind of melt together, but most are still in cube shapes, so I think most of the stuff will be okay to continue in the freezer.

The house is a shambles, due partly to this, and partly because I have to take apart my vacuum and clean filters and such, or take it to the local repair guy (that I have probably already mused about here.)


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: mg
Date: 30 Oct 19 - 07:12 PM

for woman from russia..i would just teach her tangible words for now, and verbs that you can mime..no nuances of grammar etc. OK if she speaks pidgeon English for now.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 30 Oct 19 - 06:48 PM

Dupont:

I generally do dishes while attending to cooking but I guess I was too tired. Did a rack full this morning. Will do more tonight. The others are dry and put away. Did laundry/changed the bed yesterday and all is put away. Today was foraging, hot bath, relaxation, pick up bag of produce from farm. Soaked feet also; my left foot encountered a baseboard heater on Sunday night, in the dark. It hurt! In the morning, I discovered it had opened some skin and foot was swollen badly. I had to unbuckle that strap on Birkie. Still very sore and swollen. Same one that broke almost 3 years ago - so still twinges from that plus swollen. Today I could walk; Mon and Tues, I hobbled.

Supper is half ready: cauliflower cooked; will cook cranberry/maple sausages, add jar of spaghetti sauce and use cauliflower as pasta. will do more dishes while keeping an eye on cooking! Watched two hours of TV; hot bath does take some recovery. It was a lovely day - well, warmish and not raining -yet! But I did not get last plants into ground. Hopefully tomorrow - it is to be warmish but might rain, however, must get it done as the temp is dropping on Thurs!

Need to figure out how to teach English to this poor woman from Russia. She wants so much to learn - she says; but I am not sure how long she remembers what I have said. She is only 68... I am becoming concerned.

Soon November and I have "planned" to have an open house for pottery in November - like SOON! Maybe I can set it up this week, go to Beaver for a week and have it the following week. Tomorrow...

And another pot of soup! R likes the pureed soup because his teeth are bad; I like it because the flavours of all the veggies are blended so I do not get a bite of something I am not fond of.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 30 Oct 19 - 08:50 AM

Up early for the freezer but so far no text saying it's on its way and a thunderstorm is raging overhead. The house is a shambles from everything being hastily moved in preparation for the big transfer of stuff and the arrival of the new freezer. I hope it has castors.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 29 Oct 19 - 10:43 PM

Dorothy, sometimes the way to pamper yourself is to go to bed when you need to, regardless of the state of the sink. Other times, pampering oneself is to do the dishes the night before.

I've had conversations with Gnu off and on over the last couple of weeks; he is progressing. I predict some decluttering and organizing in his future, but I doubt he'll drop in to discuss it. It's enough to know that he's feeling better every day.

I watched a rerun of Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates this evening with two dogs curled up beside me on the sofa. It's one of my favorite episodes - Fred Armisen has the most amazing family history that took twists and turns that made this as good as anything a fiction author could dream up. And puppies always make the evening nicer.

I'll head to bed early because there is a possibility that the freezer could arrive very early. I need to be ready. The current one is fluctuating freezing then not so much - mostly everything is really cold, but some of it may not be salvageable.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 29 Oct 19 - 05:55 PM

Dupont:

Well, Got to Beaver to find I had not washed the dishes before I left last time and they are still there as we left this time. Then came home to unwashed dishes here. Darn! Need to do better.

Send R to an auction with no money and he finds a friend to lend him! But not much. We spent most of Sat, Sun and Mon viewing a great deal of southeastern Ontario, decluttering the gas tank and the wallet. And the energy, though R did all the driving. Now, there is a stress factor! Finally arrived here at 11:10 pm. BED! Did manage to declutter some of R's stress. HE went off to work this am in fair shape, and I to my English class, half asleep at 1:30 pm.

The Beast had only one flower left so I guess it has gone into dormancy. Or we have not done something quite right. The friend with whom we stayed Sunday night had a smaller one still full of flowers. I researched but found no specific help.

R checked the new garden for squirrel damage but perceived none! He is taking a keen interest in the indoor and outdoor gardening! The new soil in the front yard is a marvellous addition. Expensive, too. But a joy to both of us, greatly improving the appearance with lots more room for blooming flowers and 3 low growing evergreens. Still need lots of rocks to edge it - about 40 feet!

Happily, there is still soup for supper; I am not up for much else.   

Turning the heat down before we left was good for the plants and the wallet but took some shivering to warm the bed!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 29 Oct 19 - 05:39 PM

That player had the same problem my current one has - the CD player doesn't play. Back it goes.

But since then, my upright freezer has died, resulting in the shoving of frozen meat and fish into the side-by-side and I'll be cooking a lot this week with thawed stuff. A new one is being delivered in the morning, at which time I'll empty the chilled but not frozen contents of the old one into coolers and figure out what to do with everything. A lot will go in the compost, other things can go back in the freezer (bread, I've learned, can be re-frozen). Other stuff will be baked or cooked and then frozen.

This bumps everything else further down the list. The fence materials are ready to go up on the next nice day.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 28 Oct 19 - 12:37 PM

I spent the time while my water was heating and my tea was brewing and then my tea was getting a little cool in clearing up the sinks and filling the dishwasher (after emptying it). I'd gone to bed tempting fate, ants, and possibly mice with all of the dishes and pots needing clearing up. I'm going to shift the rodent-catching focus to the garage for a while, and possibly the attic. I haven't seen anything, but that doesn't mean anything, as crafty as those little buggers are. The four I caught outside the dryer vent gave me a clue as to their comings and goings.

Time for some heavy lifting as things are moved from the car to the kitchen to the office. I found a smaller radio/CD player that can go with existing speakers and record player, but need to clean it up and then test it (and if it doesn't work, take it back.) Goodwill all the way. The old one is in beautiful clean condition but the CD changer turns but doesn't play. The power, when turned on, usually goes to the CD player even though the radio is what I've always had it set to. The cassette players still work, but I think it's time to completely retire this piece and not make it someone else's problem at the thrift store. To the e-waste bin it goes, probably later this week. I'll keep the peripheral record player, remote, and speakers.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Charmion
Date: 28 Oct 19 - 09:10 AM

I'm sorry to read that Susan WYSIWYG is ill. She seemed happy and contented to be settling into their new place, and even with help she will be grounded for quite a while.

MG's remark about being the Commandant made me think. Of course, it was not the Commandant's inspection that really mattered; it was the Sergeant's far more searching penetration of every cubic centimetre of living space, which preceded the Commandant's appearance. Having spent my military time at the bottom of the food chain, I knew only the stress of keeping one step ahead of the Sergeant.

That said, I must also point out that the Sergeant's idea of How To Live was a revelation to me after growing up with my mother the proto-hoarder. The glistening linoleum of the barrack floors and the wonderfully predictable array in the hospital linen closet were restful; they meant regular care by thorough people and a sweet absence of nasty surprises.

So I guess I come by my perfectionism honestly. I just wish I wasn't the only neatnik in the house!


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Oct 19 - 11:49 AM

I was up late enough to send off the last proofs of the last two essays. Today is lovely and is my time to mow the yard, get those fence pickets ready to put in place, and walk the dogs. I've packed away all of the paper copies of these articles I've worked on and I'll clear off my desktops and start fresh on other projects next week.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 27 Oct 19 - 01:09 AM

I would love to have one of those house beautiful homes, but need to get the place picked up enough (books, papers, etc.) and organized (decluttered!) enough that I could bring in someone a half-day a week to help maintain it. I used to do that years ago, in a different house.

At the last part now of these paper drafts. I should be able to send them out before I head to bed. Then come corrections, proof-readers know they are only to look for typos and odd placement, etc. NO EDITING THE COPY AT THIS POINT! Drives the typesetter nuts.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: mg
Date: 26 Oct 19 - 08:38 PM

i was the commandant and did the inspections. no perfectionism here.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 26 Oct 19 - 04:22 PM

I did a little computer cleanup this afternoon; I went under the hood in the old HP to see if I could move the SATA cables in a way that would let it boot properly. Since I put in the new SSD the boot order is supposed to be okay from the BIOS but it always hung up; I had to turn off then quickly back on and it would remember having seen the boot drive and start. But moving didn't do the trick, it actually put the old HDD back in the boot position so I undid my changes. I'll have to check out the BIOS again one of these days. For now I consider myself lucky I didn't kill it and I'll finish the project I've been working on in that machine. I did stick the vacuum hose in and hoover out some hefty dust piles while I was at it.

It looks like we'll get frost next week so the few things growing in the garden will be harvested soon. It's time to defrost the big upright freezer and see what all I have in there.

WYSIWYG seems to have dropped off of the face of the planet. Someone managing her account has unfriended me so I can't post directly there. I wonder if she has her phone with her, she did a lot of posting with it. Maybe something sent via Messenger? The friend who was supposed to update people hasn't posted in four weeks. #ColorMePerturbed

10-27-2019 update: I found the remarks on Sabrina's page from Sept. 30 to be edited with a tiny bit more information. We knew she would be moved to rehab, now we have information that confirms a stroke:
She is at encompass care at St Elizabeth until 10/11 then to a rehab facility. Right now she has no use in her right leg and arm. Keep Susan in your thoughts and prayers. I'm not one for prayers, but I have been thinking about her.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 26 Oct 19 - 11:31 AM

Beaver:

A good heads up re voting! I am registered on Whidbey and always have trouble with the odd bits. The who is easy but the whats are nebulous.

As for my esteemed energy. I spend large quantities of time resting, esp after the trips. Happily, Robin has been able to join me this trip. He was right up to the brink and sure he would not sleep, would not be able to rest but the country air and distance from chaos - he has slept! And gone off alone to do preferred things, as he is right now at the auction house - with no money! OR rather, he left for auction house, who knows where he actually went. As long as he is back by noon so we can go pick up pumpkin brownies at the gold mine and then make a leisurely exploring trip to an art gallery.

Direct route is an hour and a half. A Robin route - we should be there in time for the Evening of Jazz at our friend's art show - 6:30. I am resting as tomorrow is a marathon trip to west of Toronto for a wildlife animal rehabber's meeting with staff of the Ministry of natural resources and Forest. Supper with a friend in Pefferlaw!

Maybe I will have enough energy to do some wood before R gets back. Frost last night and the wood is COLD! Did some.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Charmion
Date: 26 Oct 19 - 11:20 AM

I spent the week cleaning the house. It was filthy -- cat hair and dust on everything and, in the basement, a liberal sprinkling of the wheat chaff we use for cat litter.

As I folded laundry this morning, carefully putting the newly washed towels and sheets at the bottom of their respective stacks in the linen closet, it occurred to me that I still aspire to the housekeeping standards drummed into me in recruit school and the navy hospital where I learned my trade. Consequently, I have a perfection problem; if cleaning the kitchen means preparing for the Commandant's inspection, it's easy to remind myself that we're civilians now and the Commandant ain't comin' 'round no more, and do nothing.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Oct 19 - 11:00 AM

Today dawned as a typical October day, soggy and cool. And if I can finally finish this editing job I can get into the yard next week and start making a difference.

There is a vote411 site that gives you a look at the actual items on your district ballot so you can read and research the items ahead of time. This week and next are early voting in Texas so I'm ready to vote today after I stop for lunch with moonglow.

Last night I put the water-resistant couch cover over the sofa to allow the dogs up on that piece of furniture, now that it's cold out. They have various places they can sleep, but ever since I got rid of the futon several years ago, they've been found to misbehave and get up on the good sofa. So this is my compromise. I do *kind of* wish I'd kept that futon for the dogs, but it was so huge that room couldn't be used for much of anything else.

I've heard more from Gnu; he's sounding much better, typing better now. Has people to talk to and is getting exercise.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Oct 19 - 07:13 PM

Slogging through computer/paper work today and STILL looking for the missing mouse pads. I have three or four and I remember putting them all in one place. And it was a logical place, but darned if I can figure out where that is now.

I spent some time last night assembling bits of estate sale and Goodwill electronic equipment, even as the unit in my office is slowly dying. The office radio and cassette player work but the CD changer/player is dead. The LP works. I need to swap this out for my work in here eventually. I guess I should shop for myself also.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 23 Oct 19 - 10:27 AM

Word to the wise: don't try to sleep late if there is a puppy loose in the house. I picked up stuff all over the yard this morning, and when I got back into the house I opened the kennel door and said puppy meekly walked in and sat down. We want this to be a welcoming place, but it's definitely a time out place.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 22 Oct 19 - 11:24 AM

Don, you're right - Dorothy puts us all to shame with her comings and goings!

It is finally cool enough to make cooking appealing, so yesterday I tried a box mix of a gingerbread cake. It's not too sweet and it made the house smell wonderful. I'm using it for breakfast this week.

I've been hammered by contract work the last couple of weeks, but this should be the final week of one of those projects. Toward more eBay work I have unpacked the sets of colored glasses I intend to list on eBay. I had a gorgeous set last spring and a total crackpot bought them and in the end I think she wanted a full refund and to keep the glasses. I called her bluff because she had already posted inane negative feedback before she started the process. These other glasses show a bit more use but are in fine condition. I'm running everything through the dishwasher a few times to be sure there is no limestone accumulation (using vinegar in the machine - still offering thanks to WYSIWYG for that suggestion) and will start listing them next week.

There's a lot to do around here, and enjoy the feeling that working outside is finally comfortable and we had enough rain to loosen the soil for things like thinning and transplanting iris.

There is more tech work to do; ever since adding a new C: SSD to the old computer I have to turn it on, turn it off, then immediately turn it on because apparently it doesn't see the boot drive on the first pass. I must have reversed the drive positions on the mother board. Now that the old computer is up where I can reach it, I'll make that fix.

All of this doesn't contribute a great deal to the declutter, except that if I can get stuff listed it will be off of my dining room table and I can move onto another project.

I hope you're feeling better, Susan, and I hope Pete is continuing his recuperation and treatment evaluation smoothly.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Donuel
Date: 22 Oct 19 - 08:53 AM

YOU GUYS make your determined efforts and ingenuity sound practically easy. It sounds like 30,000 calorie output a day is your average.
Oh well, somebody built the great pyramid so I won't doubt you.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Dorothy Parshall
Date: 21 Oct 19 - 07:37 PM

Dupont:
Happiness is:
1. Hearing the news about Pete. Good music surely is healing!

2. Playing in the dirt! I finally got it together to call re a load of soil - 5c.y. were delivered Sat am and I sculpted it, with a garden rake, to the desired shape and planted the few things R and I managed to get at the soon to close for the season Botanix. And the daffie bulbs that I had bought potted last spring -lots! So happy. Next day - SO tired!

R had been dubious about what I was doing to "his yard" but before I waas done, he thought we needed 5 yards more! So today I arranged for that and it was delivered before noon - Great company! I planted a number of bulbs, purchased at Canadian Tire yesterday and saved half for the new load. I am leaving it for R to do his sculpting first. There will be no more plants this season unless I can get him to extricate some of the hosta which are terribly over-crowded. I cannot budge them.

I am ridiculously happy about the improvement to the front yard. The clay is just impossible. R also planted the 8 inch mock orange, another baby from the city yard, off to its own space as it will get BIG!. Instead of a barren stretch of unhealthy grass across the whole front, we will have flowers and small shrubs. We actually have enough hosta to edge the whole thing, if we can extricate it but it is fall blooming - right now! It would be nice to intersperse it with some summer blooming.

I also moved one wheelbarrow load of stones from the back yard for the very edge. Looks great. Hope R will pitch in on that; the wheelbarrow is heavy when empty!

Otherwise, the Beast is slowing down - only 15 blooms today; I am scullery maid to this plant, everyday, sweeping up its debris but it is worth it.

Hibiscus has many blooms yet to come but only one or two a day. The house is getting very full of house plants - we probably will not need a humidifier!

The house is moderately clean and tidy, and under control. I just produced another large quantity of veggie soup. Managed to reject a "new" cutting board, explaining that we already have three and we could give this "found" one to someone else?


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 21 Oct 19 - 12:51 PM

A couple of lines of heavy thunderstorms passed through the area last night and I'm sure the news coming out of north and east Dallas will continue to give accounts of huge amounts of damage. We got some rain and outflow boundary winds, but not the tornadic activity.

When meteorologists in North Texas told folks near Preston Hollow to get into a tornado-safe spot, about 12 staffers and customers at Fish City Grill ran to the walk-in cooler. It was cold, but it was safe.

A funnel cloud dragged over the Preston-Royal area of Dallas, and the windowless cooler kept Fish City Grill’s employees sheltered as the restaurant’s walls and ceiling were shredded.

But one customer didn’t follow the group. A server pulled him into the kitchen, says Fish City Grill co-founder Bill Bayne, and they flattened themselves on the kitchen floor. That act kept them safe, and no one was hurt at the restaurant despite massive damage.

“It looks like bombs went off,” Bayne says.

He plans to reopen the restaurant, though there’s no estimated time frame yet. In that same shopping center, Interabang Books was badly damaged as well.

Princi Italia, a restaurant at the northwest corner of Preston-Royal, also used its walk-in cooler as a shelter spot during the tornado. After customers and employees got the all-clear, some found trees smashed into their cars. The restaurant suffered cracked windows, a torn-off air-conditioning unit and damaged trees. It’s closed until further notice.

Shockingly, some restaurants in the hardest-hit areas saw no damage at all. TJ’s Fresh Seafood, on the northeast corner of Preston Road and Royal Lane — and a mere 500 feet from Fish City Grill — saw no damage.

The storm path continued northeast and devastated some businesses north and east of Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas. MoMo Italian Kitchen, near Forest Lane and Greenville Avenue in Dallas, lost its sign, has no phone and suffered some damage to the building. Still, the restaurant will open at 11 a.m.


Lots of stories like this.

I went through the house to look for any water and have been out into the yard to check trees for fallen limbs and fences that they're still in place. We lucked out - this time. The folded towel is in the corner near my bed for Pepper, who came and went during the night. Cookie was in her kennel until when the storm had completely passed, when she could go into the yard if she needed. She doesn't seem to like cold wet grass at night, so she simply moved out of the kennel and plopped down next to Zeke.

The wind and rain will have blown ragweed pollen out of the area but those plants are still standing and still pumping it out. My sinuses are still suffering.

Editing is on the final pass this week, and I'll have more free time for other stuff.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 21 Oct 19 - 11:25 AM

Vacuum cleaners were added to my (managed on Thunderbird but also gives reminders on the Androids) to do list last week. Just 2 G-Techs, one hand held. Both had flat batteries and one was badly clogged when one was needed the other week so it’s charge batteries, empty, clean filters if needed every Monday from now on. OK one or other could need a charge or emptying in between but at least we start the week straight.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Charmion
Date: 21 Oct 19 - 10:32 AM

If you want to re-live your messier house renovations -- and don't we all? -- just empty the canister of your central vacuum system. Oh, boy. Plaster dust galore, with a thick layer of cat hair on top. My favourite.

Steve the Garden Guy is tidying us up for the winter even as I type, and I'm gathering strength to assault the mess that is the house. The cardboard scratcher that the cats absolutely love (and that saves the furniture) results in little bits of cardboard all over the sitting room rug, and if I leave it too long the house looks unspeakably unkempt. The other major contributor to general scruffiness is the white ceramic tile in the kitchen, which displays every fallen splotch and crumb like a Jumbotron announcement that Slatterns Live Here. So, you know, floors. Vacuum cleaner, scrubber, bucket. Bleah.

I must also go through the house with the spidey brush, a hemisphere of bristles mounted on a long handle for taking down webs from ceilings and other inconvenient places. The spiders are nesting now, so every room has a little clot of tightly-spun web somewhere in the angle at the top of the walls -- and every one shall be evicted! Doing away with the nests will not get rid of the spiders, but it will at least cut down the population, which is currently running a bit high for the comfort of this neatnik.

And that will be quite enough thankless labour for this week.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Oct 19 - 10:10 PM

Blueberries are an understory plant that typically comes up in areas where there have been forest fires that cleared out the trees or slash from logging, then live happily with small trees until they're so shaded out they die off. Commercial blueberries have to have acid soil and they don't like wet feet, but they need lots of water.

I've finished one of four design items to give people something to work with tomorrow when we start loading them into the online publishing software. Now that I have the software working the way I want the rest will be easier.

The kitchen is a mess; the dogs are in with the dog door covered because there is a thunderstorm right now. I have work to do, but don't have to get up and leave in the morning - that's the nice thing about being retired from the job I was doing. I'm busy, but on my own schedule now.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 20 Oct 19 - 04:52 PM

I like blueberries but our own attempts at growing them were poor. Related is our native billberry which grew abundantly in mum’s part of Shropshire. She used to pick them but I’m afraid my own memory (and I left that area about 6 years old) of them is a bit foggy at the moment.


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 20 Oct 19 - 02:36 PM

The fridge is now decluttered of things that were needing using; some fresh organic grape tomatoes, bell pepper, zucchini, and some Italian sausage I'd defrosted. It becomes an Italian seasoning type of dish, and I add a little mozzarella to make a creamy sauce and some wine for the aromatics. I also am baking, Jon, using up some blueberries a friend brought over in a batch of muffins. And a friend coming over for dinner this evening to share this bounty.

I tested one of the two VHS machines I brought home this week and the Toshiba works like a dream (the last one was a nightmare!). I've found the manual and printed it. There isn't a remote control, but since I'm basically using it to transmit the signal from the tape to the computer, I don't need to program, etc. I have another one to test, then I'll compare them with the existing machine (a good brand, but a really stiff odd mechanism).


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Subject: RE: De-clutter & Fitness: House, job, life - 2019
From: Jon Freeman
Date: 20 Oct 19 - 11:51 AM

Mum has decided she wants to try doing a bit more baking again and that triggered a small sort out of the baking tins. There were 2 bun trays and 2 loaf tins in very good condition but the round ones I found were in a very poor state. I’ve disposed of them and got her a pair of 8” springform deep
tins and a pair of shallower 7” loose bottom tins. Hopefully that’s her (and possibly me one day if I decide to join in) set up for a while.


I got the juicer out of a shed yesterday. I need to find the sterilising powder (should be tucked away in another shed together with plastic bottles) and give it a thorough cleaning. I’m not sure its working right as both speeds seem the same to me but it will have to do for the (home grown and not that brilliant) grapes we want to try.

Apples were the main juicing project here. We had a system going where I had 3 demijohns which I’d fill with juice from the juicer and syphon off into bottles for the freezer. Mum used to wash and cut the apples as needed, I’d put the apples through the machine, etc. and the bottling was a combined effort. It was a bit of a chore but we processed up to 3 wheelbarrow loads of apples that way.

We did get an apple press and crusher towards the end of our apple projects but, even though these things seem to do wonders on videos, I never had much joy with it and seemed to get better yields of juice with the machine. That and those particular apples would yield a nice pink juice rather than brown through the machine.

Either way, our old “juicing tree” no longer gives the yields it used to, neither mum nor I want to get involved in longer projects and we didn’t replace the small chest freezer bought for juice and cordials after it packed in.

I've said it a few times at home but we really must get round to finding a home for the press and crusher. Although they were quite expensive, personally I’m not bothered about money for them although I’d like someone to collect. They won’t be used here again and it seems a shame that they just lie idle in a shed in the field.


The grass really needs cutting here but I’ve not felt up to it. I think I might get the “garden helper” mum has once a week to have a go. Then I’ll drain/use up the fuel in the petrol machines (mower, strimmer and a leaf blower) and call it quits for the year.


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Mudcat time: 14 November 5:31 AM EST

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