Today is Shopping Day. I don't want to go but I have to because we have no veggies in the fridge save for carrots, tomatoes and mushrooms, we're almost out of milk, completely out of bread, Greg is about to run out of yogurt. Sigh. So I have to go. I don't want to go. My "aunt came to visit" and my energy level is very low. So I'm only going to Aldi, with a stop at Save A Lot to check on any bakery clearances. Hopefully I can stay away from bad impulse purchases. Greg hasn't exercised in 6 weeks and complains that he's put on weight, and I've put on a lot of weight. Criminy. Last night my daughter posted a picture of me on Instagram that I had never seen. It was taken at her aunt and uncle's wedding 25 years ago (it's their anniversary today, I can't believe it, I'm so OLD!) and man, I looked gooooood! I asked her to email it to me too so I can print it and post it on the fridge, on the pantry... good grief, I should print it and laminate it and take it shopping with me like à la Flat Stanley, to remind myself not to buy any crap! lol
So grocery shopping will be my main activity of the day, I'm afraid. I don't feel up to doing much else.
Horrible, No Good, Very Bad To Do List (just in case):
- Transplant ferns into bare patch in front lawn to make shady planter
- Caption old pictures that have already been scanned
- Scan more old pictures
- Scrub patio pavers with bleach to remove mildew - this might have to wait until the months when it's not quite so hot!
- Research cone flowers and their care and plant them somewhere
- Finish painting squirrel sign and assemble it
- Create spreadsheet to track IRA contributions using ALL our old tax returns - Started but need to do more research.
- Figure out if we should contribute to regular or Roth IRAs for 2016 and fund them
- Fertilize the raspberries
- Download all May and June photos to my external drive
- Research extension cords for generator
- Call gyneco to make annual appointment
- Find the cats' rabies licenses
- Dust the entry room, breezeway, bedrooms
- Read reply from insurer about son's prescription
- See if I still have mildew-resistant white paint for bathroom ceiling
- Declutter linen closet
- Clean kitchen cabinets
- Take items to the dump
- Inventory seeds for Fall plantings
- Look at what's in the large bin on front porch and declutter
- Clean out the printer stand, including school paperwork folders
- Declutter the top of the fridge
- File the remaining loose recipes that I organized already in appropriate recipe binders
- Purge filing cabinet
- Make a lightbox to take better pictures
- Send email to my French BFF
- Get Greg to replace the ceiling tile in the entry room
- Declutter coat closet/son's closet (shared closet)
- Write a menu for next week.
- Add mulch to the vegetable garden
- Pull unwanted plants from center "planter" in the backyard, add soil, plant flowers, add edging around it (watch out for large roots that would be in the way). Make planter with other materials if edging doesn't work.
- Make rice crispy treats
- Research when and how to harvest a pineapple
- Divide and repot the aloe plant
- Add Osmocote plant food to roses and hibiscus
- Start new tomato and green pepper seeds
- Write new letter to great grand aunt
- Mend items in mending basking
- Declutter exercise room (including storage bench)
- Melt down old candles and make into one or two new candles
- Scrub toilets
- Wipe down bathroom sinks
Make more hummingbird nectar- Done
- Call my mom (on Thursday morning)
- Schedule water bill payment
- Schedule the last credit card payments
- Make "No Soliciting" sign for front door
After all that, Greg said that he had had a premonition dream last night about him and his dad walking together and his dad had slipped and fallen and Greg had been unable to catch him in time. Freaky. Wait, is it still a premonition if you dream about it after it's happened but you just don't know about it? Probably not. Anyway, I'd rather he have dreams about us winning the lottery.
I hurt my shoulder again last night but this time I know exactly how I did it: I was reaching into the dryer to move the load around to redistribute it and instead of bending all the way down on my knees, I just bent down at the waist so I had to twist my arm to reach in the back of the dryer and that torque motion hurt my shoulder again. Argh. I had just been thinking, yesterday morning, that my shoulder hadn't been hurting in a few days and I was happy to be healed. Well, darn it. Then, on my left shoulder blade, I discovered last night that I had been stung by some bugs, repeatedly, in the same spot. I suspect mosquitoes while I was at the FOTC concert on Sunday night. Anyhoo, there's a hard knot under my skin that's painful and tender to the touch. It doesn't look infected, it just hurt. As a matter of fact, I'm wondering if maybe I didn't get stung by wasps instead of mosquitoes because it doesn't itch at all, it just hurts. But I think I would have noticed getting stung by wasps, no?! Anyhoo, both my shoulders hurt, it's annoying.
I'm in a very cranky mood today, due to hormones. I have to really watch myself because everything and everyone is annoying me! I just got back from grocery shopping and it went well, but I'm finding myself being short and sarcastic with Greg so I need to hibernate for a while. After I deal with the receipts and Greg's conference call is over, I think I'll put on some Smooth Jazz, lie down, read my book, and probably take a nap!
This afternoon, Greg got a phone call from his mom who was very distraught because the nurse called an ambulance to get his dad to the ER ASAP. His mom was left behind and didn't know or remember which hospital they had gone to. Thankfully, his sister showed up while he was on the phone with his mom so his sister is taking care of it right now. Greg tries not to show it but he's pretty rattled. He went to mow the lawn to let some steam out, although it's the hottest part of the day so he's more likely to get even more "steamed up". We talked about him possibly needing to drive to Ohio and spend several weeks there if his dad's situation (with the latest discovery of something wrong with the liver) means that it's getting to be the end. He seems to think that he'll be able to work from there. Having nursed my stepmom during the last 10 days of her life at her home when she had pancreatic cancer, I think he's being a little over-optimistic about being able to work at all. He'll be far too busy supporting his mom and helping out with Hospice care. But he's got to do what he's got to do. So we're waiting to hear what the doctors say about his dad's status right now.
Evening Update: we just heard from Greg's sister that his dad has broken his pelvis. If that wasn't bad enough, they found, while examining him, that his lung cancer had spread to his pelvis and his legs. We don't even know what's going on with the liver but needless to say, the prognosis isn't good at all. They're waiting for him to be transferred to the hospital that had been treating his cancer. He is fighting staying in the hospital and wants to go home, but that's not going to happen. I told Greg to expect that his dad probably won't be going home again, based on past experience with cancer patient care, through my mom who worked in the cancer ward for many years. He agrees. I suggested that he flies there instead of drive, which would be quicker. He doesn't need his truck up there anyway since his mom has a car and he'd be needed to chauffeur her around, probably. So he's checking flights so he's ready to go if he gets the call from his sister tomorrow.
In other news, a crappy day suddenly got even crappier for me. Before this latest call, we had a nice dinner, and Greg and I were sitting down to watch a show afterwards, when I checked my email and saw that I had a message from Oldest Son. I had sent him and his GF an email this morning thanking them for a lovely evening of conversation, dining and music last night and expressing my hope that OSGF and I could "do this together again soon" and joked that we could even go sit at the Starbucks where OS would be working. I also need to mention that when we were chatting during the intermission last night, when son expressed concern about how he would renew his website that costs $120, I had offered to pay for half. However, his message tonight was basically to tell me that he felt that I was trying to insert myself and control his life too much, that he wanted to me stop offering advice about his website (I emailed him last month to remind him to change the sentence in his bio that still said that he was going to graduate in May 2016 to reflect that he had graduated), emailing him coupons and "helpful articles" and only email with "important family updates". He asked me to not come to his concerts unless HE had invited me to come and give him "space". I was completely blindsided by the email and extremely hurt. I'm someone who has prided herself in letting the kids live their own lives and I have been worried about him thinking that I didn't care about him since we rarely communicate. I have texted him about once a month to ask how he was doing, email him maybe once every 2 weeks at the most. I never call him unless I can't get him to tell me he's alive via text or email. I love jazz and have very much enjoyed going to the concerts at UCF and this one because I'm so proud of him! I can't express how terribly upset I am. So I emailed him back telling me how much he had hurt me, outlining all the ways in which I haven't been invading his life (such as not being on Facebook, not following his GF on Instagram, not showing up unexpectedly, etc) , explaining how I enjoyed my relationship with his brother's girlfriend and how I had hoped to have the same kind of relationship with his own girlfriend, but that I wasn't about to force myself on anyone so that I would never show up at anything again and would stop contacting him altogether. I also asked him not to reply to the email because I won't read the answer. I'm done. I'm not about to include him in "important family updates" (like what? when I'm on my death bed? He never expresses any interest in our life at all! I sobbed and sobbed and sobbed over this and it's been over an hour and I'm still sobbing. I would have never in a million years expected this. Never. The last time he and I had talked at length in person was in late May and he had told me that when he and his GF were going to get married, they wanted very very few people there but that they really wanted ME to come. I had told him that I felt that weddings should be for the people who get married, not an audience, so I probably wouldn't attend (I dislike ceremonies of all kinds and I don't like being around people all that much. OK, not at all!). Is this someone who is trying to control his life?! I really don't get it. Today has been a very crappy day indeed.
- Greg worked from home today, saving us about $20 in gas and tolls
- Before I got up, he made a run to RaceTrac and got himself 2 Sodapalooza refills and one for me too. Awww! Thanks, honey! I put mine in the fridge for later.
- He also gassed up his truck so now I have yet another receipt with which to get a freebie. I haven't taken the surveys recently so I have a backlog of those.
- I checked the new Aldi and Save A Lot ads online and there's not much that gets me excited, but I have to go shopping. The plums are on sale at Aldi by the piece. Usually I don't have a good sense of whether it's a good price by the pound or not, but plums were $0.99/lb at Save A Lot on Monday and I had bought 6 plump plums (oh yeah!) and it was about $1.29 so 4 smaller plums probably equal a pound. I'll have to see the size of the plums at Aldi.
|Save A Lot|
|Save A Lot: no room in the freezer, unfortunately.|
- I cancelled our HBONow subscription since Game of Thrones season has ended and we have no interest in any of their other shows. That'll save us $14.99 a month.
- I didn't feel like shopping for hours because my shoulder hurt, so I decided to do all my shopping at Aldi and skip CVS, etc. I took the coupon organizer just in case, but I haven't clipped or sorted the latest coupons so I left those at home.
- I brought my Sodapalooza cup along so I could sip on the CF Diet Coke that Greg had gotten me, and I ate one of the chocolate brownie fiber bars that I had gotten on clearance at SAL on Monday, since I hadn't had breakfast.
- I drove the Focus (better gas mileage).
- I stopped by Save A Lot to check the clearance table, hoping to find more bakery items at 50% off. Sadly, there were none :(
- However, I did find a 2-lb chub of ground beef on clearance for $2.80, 2 packages of turkey bratwursts on clearance for $1.90 each, a 1.73 lb bag of ok-looking cherries on clearance for $0.99/lb. I can't seem to resist clearance items!
- I also bought a box of mac'n cheese ($0.39) and 3 ears of corn for $1.00. The husks look a little dry but I'm sure the corn is OK inside. I'll cook it over the next couple of days anyway.
- My OOP was $9.70 and I'll get 2% back in Rewards from Discover.
- At Aldi, I got everything else.
- I had commented on Laura's blog that I was going to get the bags of butter lettuce that I had seen in her picture, but then I realized that they were only 6 oz each for $1.49, which seemed puny, so I grabbed the Romaine hearts for $1.99. Later on I had a change of heart and decided to exchange the Romaine hearts for a hydroponic Boston lettuce for the same price, but there was a glut of people at that end of the aisle by then and I was cranky so I just kept the Romaine hearts.
- My Aldi hasn't had anything on clearance for quite a while.
- I had written on my list "veggies!" so I grabbed a bunch of stuff: a HUGE cucumber for salads, broccoli, portabella caps, zucchini, avocadoes.
- Fruit-wise:bananas, apples, blueberries (still on sale for $0.99 so I grabbed 2), strawberries (2) and 4 plums. I had hoped to find pears for my son but they didn't have any.
- They didn't have any pretzel buns so I'll have to bake my own.
- The milk was $2.19 a gallon a couple of weeks ago when Greg was gone and I didn't need milk (and didn't have room in the fridge) but today it was back up to $3.19. It would have been cheaper (and actually free for me!) at CVS.
- I got a box of kitchen trash bags at $4.99
- I resisted the Moser white chocolate/cookie bars! Ohh, I wanted them. But I was good. I think the Moser chocolate is vastly superior to the Chocoeur.
- My OOP, including the trash bags that aren't part of my grocery budget, was $48.83 and I will get 3% back in Amex Rewards.
- On my way home, I stopped by Publix because I needed to recycle some plastic bags and a bunch of foam egg & veggie trays, along with some RaceTrac foam cups that Greg had accumulated. As I was pulling into the parking lot, I remembered that the SavingStar freebie (PopCorners) was a Publix exclusive, so I went inside to look for it. It was hard to find! At my Publix it was across the deli, where the naan bread and such items usually are. It's priced at $2.99 but totally free once you get the SavingStar rebate back. MobiSave is also offering $1.25 back on it! So I should make $1.25 off it. I picked the Kettle flavor. So my OOP was $2.99 and I will get 3% back in Amex Rewards, and hopefully $2.99 back from SavingStar and $1.25 back from MobiSave.
- I thought about stopping by RaceTrac to refill my Sodapalooza cup and redeem a freebie code that I had in my purse, but my shoulder was hurting more by then and I just wanted to be home so I skipped it.
- My son helped me carry the groceries in :)
- While I was gone, Greg and our son drove to RaceTrac to get themselves more free Sodapalooza refills (Greg is sadly counting the days until the end of July since this is when Sodapalooza ends!). I was irked to find that the empty recycling bins that I had left at the front door when I left, were still there. I guess they left them there for me to bring in? Grrr.
- For lunch, Greg and I split the last of the mashed potatoes and cut up hot dogs from last night. I also had the last 2 Hawaiian rolls bought on clearance, and a fruit cup. Our son made himself a sandwich.
- I submitted my receipts for rebates from SavingStar, MobiSave, and Checkout 51. CK 51 sent me an acknowledgement email right away, as they always do, but MobiSave didn't, which worries me. They usually sent me the email and the money within seconds. My app shows that my receipt was submitted but no emails whatsoever. Uh Oh... I wasn't sure that I had submitted my receipt properly to SavingStar so I resubmitted it and email them to warn them.
- Checkout 51 credited my account for the $0.25 off the blueberries.
- I earned the daily Bing Rewards credits and a few Swagbucks.
- Pixel Peeper snapped a picture of a sign that really made me laugh recently: "Trespassers will be Composted". LOL. I love it. I looked online to find one for my front door as I'm sure soliciting (political and other) will be ramping up soon, but couldn't find one that I was willing to spend good money on. So I decided to make my own. However, as Susan well knows, I still haven't finished my No Squirrels Allowed sign that I started weeks ago, so who knows when/if this new one will ever get done?! I suppose that my "The Queen is Not Accepted An Audience Today" sign would have worked too, but I enjoy it too much on my mantle. It makes me chuckle every time I see it. Every. single. time.
- Our son rode my bike to go attend the free teen programming at the library today. However, when he get there he was told today's activity was watching a movie and he wasn't interested in that so he came straight home.
- I offered to drive to RaceTrac to get Sodapalooza refills. Greg said he would go but I had to wait 30 minutes and I wanted a cold CF Diet Coke now! I asked our son if he wanted a drink but he didn't and offered me the use of his cup so I could get 2 refills for myself. Aww, what a sweetie :) So I took the Focus and got Greg his 2 Diet Dr. Peppers and my 2 CF Diet Coke refills.
- MobiSave did credit my account with the $1.25 for the popcorn chips rebate. Phew! Now I hope that SavingStar credits me too. They usually take longer.
- I received a Kohl's mailer advertising that they will be granting triple loyalty points during the last weekend in July so my son and I have to clean out his room and closet and see what clothing he might need for the upcoming year and go shopping that weekend. I suspect we might end up at Target, though, as we have been luckier there with his size in jeans than at Kohl's. I don't think he'll need much of anything but I might as well try to score some Kohl's cash if I can.
- I harvested a couple of tomatoes, a red jalapeño and 2 tiny green peppers that were threatening to spoil.
- It didn't rain today so I watered the potted plants with water from the rain barrel.
- I made a new batch of hummingbird nectar.
- For dinner, I cooked Portobello Stroganoff. I used the portobello caps that I had bought today, light sour cream, half an onion that had started to sprout, a little bit of white wine ($2.99 a bottle from Aldi), some homemade vegetable broth powder (made several years ago!) and egg-free noodles from Aldi (I think). It was good and I had enough leftovers to pack for Greg's lunch tomorrow, also we just decided now that he will be working from home due to the situation with his dad.
- I had actually been planning on surprising Oldest Son by paying for 100% of his website renewal fee for him but now that we're not on speaking terms, I get to save $120. Yay me.
- None today but we'll be buying Greg a plane ticket to Columbus either tonight or tomorrow (to add insult to injury, the Southwest website has been completely down for most of the day, apparently and from what I can read on Twitter, their whole network has been affected). I told him he probably should buy a 1-way ticket since we have no idea how long he would be staying. Booking a return flight and having to change it possibly several times would probably end up costing more more than buying 2 one-way tickets, I'm guessing, and I doubt he'd be in the mindset of calling the airlines to make changes within the delays, if that was the case.
- I should have bought Gala apples at Save A Lot ($2.99) instead of Red Delicious apples at Aldi ($3.79), darn it! When I entered SAL I just saw the other varieties priced at $3.99 and since I had distractingly added the apples under "Aldi" on my shopping list at the last minute, I had forgotten that SAL had apples on sale. Grrr.
- Similarly, I have stopped checking the Publix weekly ad for several months, because usually the "deals" are far and few between for me so I don't even bother anymore. However, when I was there today and perusing the new-to-me groceries coupon flyer, I realized that Publix had their large eggs on sale for $0.99 a dozen, which was $0.20 cheaper than Aldi. Arrgh.
- The egg "fiasco" could have been averted had I gone to CVS since I would have gotten them for free there, thanks to the $3 ECB that I somehow have in my account and my CVS gift card. But I was cranky and didn't want to make a lot of stops so I didn't go there at all.
- I should have stopped by RaceTrac in Clermont to gas up the Focus since gas is cheaper there than near my house, but I got distracted and drove to Aldi right away and then didn't feel like stopping on my way home.
- Duke Energy finally replied to my email asking what the "asset securization charge" was that had suddenly appeared on my bill and said that they had tried to contact me via phone (my email specifically told them to ONLY contact me via email) and that I needed to call them as they felt the issue could be better addressed over the phone. So I replied "I am not reachable by phone. How hard can it be to explain what "Asset Securization Charge" mean in an email? No wonder why JD Powers & Associates rated you dead last in Customer Satisfaction." So, in turn, they replied with an attached flyer that explained what that charge was. Was that so hard, Duke Energy?! And also, those utility companies make billions of dollars on the backs of the consumers. But now we have to pay a special fee to help them dispose of their nuclear reactors AND they're trying to sell it to is as a huge savings compared to what it could have been?! Assholes. Told you I was cranky today.
- When I checked the mail, I found yet another envelope addressed to me with "Postage Due" on it and this time they wanted $1.51. I'm started to feel targeted by my own post office, damn it. Why aren't these problems caught at the originating post office so the SENDER gets billed for the extra postage?! So once again I refused the envelope and marked it "Return To Sender" as I wasn't familiar with the sender and couldn't tell what was in the envelope. I'm doubly pissed because whenever I have tried to mail something from home that didn't have enough postage, the envelopes have always come back to me with "insufficient postage" on it, so I took care of it. I looked up the company that had sent me this latest envelope later on and it appeared to me a seed distributor. So I think that the Florida Wildflower Seeds website that I ordered from had one of their supplier mail me a packet separately without warning me (I ordered 4 different types of seeds) and since that supplier is not a non-profit entity, they don't get a discount on postage. It's a total guess but the only thing that makes sense. So now I'm probably out the money I paid for at least one package of seeds (and shipping). What a fiasco.
- By the way, I received an apology email from the other company that had mailed me the "free" coupon book in a Priority Mail envelope but their apology was "we're sorry, we ran out of regular envelopes so we used that one and we don't understand why they wanted you to pay extra shipping since we paid for it". Well, duh, because you used a Priority Mail envelope but only affixed first-class postage! I didn't even bother replying, I was so annoyed.
- While Greg was mowing, he hit a hidden "knee" near one of our trees and it broke his mower blade! He told me that he was going to Ace Hardware to get a replacement so I gave him the $5.00 Rewards coupon that I had received recently. However, he was distracted by his dad's situation and realized, as he handed me the receipt, that he had forgotten to redeem it. So it's back in my possession. It expires in September so I'm sure I'll find something else to spend it on. As a matter of fact, I had said I would spend it on... something and now I've forgotten what that was supposed to be. The mower blade cost $21.40 after tax. Greg charged it to his Discover and there's a 5% Discover Bonus Rewards on Home Improvement Stores, which I think Ace Hardware qualifies for.
- I had to compost about 1 lb of cherries, a cantaloupe and 2 pears bought about a week and a half ago that had gone bad :(
- Fed the cats
- Worked on my shopping list
- Brought the recycling bins up the driveway
- Went grocery shopping
- Put the recycling bins away
- Documented my trip and put everything away
- Submitted rebates
- Input receipts into my spreadsheets
- Went to RaceTrac
- Wrote my weekly grocery shopping post
- Replied to some emails
- Cooked dinner
- Took down the laundry from the laundry racks and asked Youngest Son to carry the baskets to the living room for me so I wouldn't injure my shoulder even more
- For a husband that is a good sport when I'm cranky and crabby.
- For a son who always offers to help me when he sees me struggling or hears me huff and puff, lol.
- That Greg has the type of job that can be done away from the office, so it will be possible for him to be with his dad for an extended period of time when it becomes necessary.
I heard some birds calling outside so I went to the window and I never did see those birds but I spotted a hummingbird sipping from every single "flowers" of one of the feeders that I had refilled yesterday. Darn window screens that won't let me take pictures from inside, though!
Later on, I was sitting on the patio having a good cry over the situation with Oldest Son when a hummingbird female (it was almost all dark gray or brown so I'm guessing it was a female) came to drink at the feeder closest to me. It stayed there for the longest time, in profile, hovering and drinking, almost daring me to take pictures and I DID have my camera and I did NOT take any pictures. Because I was so sad that even the hummingbird couldn't cheer me up. So it flew off.
I hope you had a better day than us. Hug your kids and your parents (well, the ones that you get along with!) while you can because you never know what can come out of nowhere. I don't know if I'll be blogging tomorrow, I might go dark for a while. Don't be alarmed if I do.