Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Semi Domestic ~ Tuesday 8/2/16

I feel like I should just cut and paste my post from yesterday!!

August is here and with it came the horrible humidity although we have no rainfall. A local news article this morning stated that this past July, we got less than 2 inches of rain in Central Florida, making it the 2nd driest July in recorded history.

No rain predicted for today either so I'll need to water the potted plants tonight.

It's 8:00 am, I'm sitting in the backyard until 10 am and then I'll head inside to watch L & O Criminal Intent and do chores during the commercial breaks. It worked very well yesterday.

Then this afternoon I really need to do bigger chores such as the dishes, vacuuming, etc.

Bless asked whether I was going to declutter 2 items for August 2nd. Hmm, maybe, but I'm certainly not going to do a marathon kike she did in July so don't think this is going to become a theme! Maybe my thing should be "clean as many things as there are days in the date!" but then my dishes wouldn't get done until the end of the month!

To Do List :
  • Crafty/Creative:
    • Finish painting squirrel sign and assemble it
    • Make a lightbox to take better pictures
    • Melt down old candles and make into one or two new candles
    • Make "No Soliciting" sign for front door and another one for the other front door (we have two)
  • Cleaning/Decluttering:
    • Dust the entry room, breezeway, bedrooms (including son's fan)
    • Declutter linen closet
    • Clean kitchen cabinets
    • Clean out the printer stand, including school paperwork folders
    • Declutter the top of the fridge
    • Iron - Done
    • Mend items in mending basket (add Greg's hat)
    • Declutter exercise room (including storage bench)
    • Vacuum the Expedition and the Focus
    • Do the dishes- Done
    • Fold the laundry - Done
    • Put the laundry away - Done
    • Vacuum living room
    • Sweep breezeway
    • Sweep and mop kitchen
    • Sweep and mop downstairs bathroom
    • Spray bleach in shower stall
    • Scrub downstairs toilet
    • Vacuum daughter's room
    • Wash daughter's bedding
  • Cooking/Baking/Preserving:
    • Check on the pineapples to see if they're ready to be cut up and dehydrated
    • Write a menu for this week - Done
    • Collect dehydrated onions and process them - collected in a jar. 
  • Entertainment
    • Plan an outing to Leu Botanical gardens or Bok Tower Gardens
  • Errands:
    • Take items to the dump
    • Pick up acne soap from dermatologist (on Wednesday)
  • Gardening/outdoors:
    • Transplant ferns into bare patch in front lawn to make shady planter
    • Research cone flowers and their care and plant them somewhere - Transplanted them in larger pot.
    • Scrub patio pavers with bleach to remove mildew (this might have to wait until the months when it's not quite so hot!)
    • Fertilize the raspberries - I'm thinking about pulling them and putting more roses in pots in their place.
    • Add mulch to the vegetable garden - I will do this once I have replaced the broken self-watering bins
    • 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. (this will have to wait until Fall when it's not so hot and when I can plant wildflower seeds).
    • Divide and repot the aloe plant
    • Plant more okra
    • Trim grass behind the hedge
    • Find fish emulsion and use on plants
    • Check on seed nursery - Done
    • Water the garden - Done
  • Health:
    • Call gyneco to make annual appointment
    • Read reply from insurer about son's prescription
    • Call pharmacy to order more acne medications for my son (need both, ask for the price)
    • Get back on the recumbent bike! 
    • Do 5 min of strength exercises - Done (and they're 3-lb weights, not 2 lbs!)
  • Maintenance:
    • See if I still have mildew-resistant white paint for bathroom ceiling
    • Get Greg to replace the ceiling tile in the entry room
    • Test the batteries in all 3 smoke detectors and replace as needed
    • Vacuum fridge coils
    • Greg to call plumber
    • Trim my bangs - Done
  • Technology/Paperwork:
    • Caption old pictures that have already been scanned
    • Scan more old pictures
    • 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 - I guess I need to wait until tax time next year, actually. I'll have until April 15, 2017 to fund 2016 IRAs so I need to work on taxes way sooner than I did this year so I'd have time to fund the IRAs and THEN file my taxes.
    • Download all May-July photos to my external drive
    • Back up my external drive to my other external drive
    • File the remaining loose recipes that I organized already in appropriate recipe binders
    • Purge filing cabinet
    • File paperwork
    • Write new letter to great grand aunt
    • Write July Food Expenses Recap post - Done
    • Sort coupons - Done


  • Greg took leftovers to work for his lunch. 

  • I suggested he takes one of the cans of Diet Dr Pepper that I had gotten him for free at CVS for his camping trip so he poured one over a few ice cubes in his Sodapalooza cup and was happy as a clam. I need to remember to put one in the fridge tonight. 

  • I brewed a pot of the free coffee from Wawa and had the last 2 slices of banana nut cream cake bought on 50% clearance last week for my breakfast. 
Early morning breakfast on the patio

  • I clipped some coupons that I printed yesterday.

  • I earned the daily Bing Rewards credits, I'm at 97% of my goal, I should earn a gift card tomorrow, woohoo!

  • I earned a few Swagbucks.  I'm at 1,981 SB as of 10:30 a.m. so I'm hoping to reach 2,200 SB soon :)

  • I got some bread dough out of the fridge and let it rise outdoors.  The heat and humidity should work wonders! 

  • Well, it didn't work immediately and I had a preheated oven so I went ahead and made the Cheesy Zucchini Bites for dinner and baked them while the bread dough finished rising.

  • My lunch was an egg salad sandwich, baby carrots (bought on sale at Aldi several weeks ago) and Veggie Ranch dip (bought on clearance last week), a navel orange and a piece of cherry pie (bought on clearance last week).

  • I uploaded new digital coupons to my Publix digital wallet.

  • I collected water in the shower and then used it to water my peace lily and a rose bush. I read recently that you shouldn't use grey water on vegetables and herbs and that kind of makes sense when I think about how foul that grey water that I had dumped into my rain barrel had become in just a couple of days!

  • I put the head of the tiny homegrown pineapple that I had cut up earlier this week.  I don't think it was mature enough to regrow roots, but you never know. I recycled a glass honey jar and put it in one of the South facing windows in the breezeway.

  • I spent the afternoon doing chores both on and off the computer, although when I look at my list of things yet to be done, it doesn't look like I accomplished much!

  • I brewed some iced tea to drink tomorrow.

  • I whipped up a new bottle of liquid hand soap. I'm still reusing the same Bath & Body Works foaming up bottle as I have been using for the past couple of years. I ran out of grapefruit essential oil so today I used Bergamot and Lemon.

  • For dinner I grilled a package of Butterball Smoked Turkey Sausage in the toaster oven and heated up one of the 2 dishes of Cheesy Zucchini Bites that I had made this morning.  Greg absolutely loved it. Good because that's what he's having for lunch tomorrow!

  • Water for the garden.

  • I cannot find my favorite bread baking loaf pan!  I looked everywhere and it's nowhere to be found. I haven't used it in months so I have no idea where I might have put it.  I don't know why I wouldn't have put it back where it usually goes so I'll need to ask my daughter about it when she comes back. But she won't remember either :(

  • I was hoping to get another season out of my self-watering bins but this summer has been brutal on them and most of them are falling apart :(  So I might have to spend money to get new bins and make new self-watering bins for my next gardening season. 

  • Cooked Greg's breakfast
  • Packed his lunch
  • Wrote a menu for the week
  • Collected the trash throughout the house and took it down for collection
  • Folded the laundry and put part of it away
  • Clipped some coupons
  • Baked bread
  • Cooked half of dinner
  • Watered some potted plants
  • Made my and Greg's beds
  • Put the rest of the laundry away
  • Unloaded the dishwasher
  • Did a load of dishes and washed all pots and pans
  • Trimmed my bangs
  • Wrote up the July Food Expenses post
  • Did my 5 minutes of strength exercises with my dumbells!

  • Brewed iced tea
  • Ironed
  • Made liquid hand soap
  • Cooked the rest of dinner
  • Watered the garden

  • For my daughter to have scored 20 points higher on her SAT test the 2nd time around. She already had a great result, now it's even a little better!
  • For running water.  I can't imagine having to lug water from a nearby (polluted) river or lake in buckets.  

8:00 am and the birds are quiet. I think they dislike the heat and humidity as much as we do!  A hummer just came to visit though, yeah! I only saw one the whole time I was in the yard yesterday.

I hope the doves are OK. I had just spotted their nest in the diseased oak tree above Greg's shed yesterday, when I spied the hawk swoop into the tree, which suddenly exploded with birds flying away (mostly swifts, I think). I wasn't fast enough with the camera. Anyhow, I never saw the hawk fly out again but there were things falling from the tree and i feared it was feathers... but it was leaves. Phew! So I hope to see the doves today.  Update: well, I saw one of them. Yay!

The hibiscus was just waking up this morning...
But this strawberry flower was ready to greet the day!

This strawberry looks ready to be harvested...

If that lizard doesn't get it first!

Phew, the dove came by to get a drink and a little snack. 

Which ruffled up the female cardinal that showed up at the same time, AGAIN.

Oh, I think she's about to wave at me!

Ah, never mind...

Oh, yeah, that feels gooooood!

And here is a little peck from her mate.  Awwww...

Pretty boy!

I see... the female brought reinforcement to help get rid of the dove!  The lizard mafia is in town...

That must have worked, the dove flew away and the cardinal had the feeder all to herself.

A hummingbird came for a little snack as well.

I finally photographed the ditzy Sulphur butterfly that always comes tumbling down the garden but never seems to stop on any flower...
How was your Tuesday?


  1. Congrats to your daughter. That's great

  2. I live with the heat and humidity, but we are having regular late afternoon thunderstorms, so I am not having to water much at all

    1. I was re-reading last August's posts and I was complaining about all the rain and how I wanted to see sunshine. Now I'm complaining about no rain and too much sunshine! It'd be nice to get our usual mid to late afternoon thunderstorms too. Even tonight, as I went to water the garden, I would hear lots of thunder and we had a lot of those heat lightning storms, but nary a drop of rain.
      I might have to go do a rain dance to try to attract some of your rain!

  3. Congratulations to your daughter on her new SAT scores! Well done!

    Loved today's episode of the Backyard Bird Feeder Tales! You should publish a book!

    1. Thank you :) Those birds do keep us entertained, don't they? I was so worried about the doves. I hope that hawk just flew through the tree and didn't get any birdies. I want it to eat the huge grasshoppers that I keep on spying in the grass, though.

  4. I think it's so cool that you grew a pineapple. Not living in a tropical climate, we don't see that around here.

    1. I think it's so cool too! Growing up in France (latitude of Canada!), my stepdad who is from Martinique used to tell us stories of going into the pineapple orchards and eating the pineapples and I dreamed of it. So when I first tried to regrow the pineapple heads, 2-3 years ago, and they grew roots, I was very excited. I was doubtful that I would actually end up with pineapples though so it's been an excellent surprise. I grew 8 of them this year! The other 7 are ripening indoors as we speak and I sure hope that they do ripen because the first one I cut up was a total bust. Still I guess I could candy them or something, if they're too tart/unripe and I can't use them for anything.

  5. Oh my, yes. You certainly were domestic today. You did a little bit of everything...dishes, laundry, baking, gardening. You are going to enjoy that iced tea tomorrow. It looks very good.

    I enjoy watching the Backyard Birds saga that is going on over at your house. Sometimes it is comedic. Other times there is some drama. But it is always very entertaining.

    1. The only downside to the iced tea is that I really shouldn't be drinking it in the afternoons (which is when iced tea sounds very good indeed!) because it's not caffeine free and then I'm up late at night :(

  6. Your lunch looks delicious! My lunch typically consists of leftovers from the night before.

    We're waiting for a good, soaking rain here, too.

    1. I used to hate leftovers and now I'm upset when I don't have any leftovers for lunch. That is, I was upset until I discovered that 2 slices of bread with some light mayo and a sliced hard-boiled egg makes me pretty happy :)

      I hope it rains in your neck of the woods. Here it looked very dark and it was thundering like crazy and we had lightning and then we got this little piddly rain... arrgh. But I guess it's better than nothing!


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