Monday, September 19, 2016

Shopping Day, Part 1: Monday, 9/19/16

No Domestic Monday theme today because one of two things is going to happen today:
1) Either I will actually do Grocery Shopping Part 1 today, OR
2) I will be too tired to do anything.

You see, it's 1:18 a.m. as I type this.  I got busy yesterday afternoon and ended up sipping on that free cup of full caffeinated coffee from RaceTrac into the evening. So I'm wide awake. And Greg leaves at 5:15 a.m. for the airport so I said I'd get up at 5 a.m. to see him off.  And I fed the kittens only formula at 7:30 p.m., thinking that they'd wake up again at about 10:30 so I would give them baby cereal then to hold them through the night, only they didn't, so you know as soon as I put my head on the pillow, they're going to decide to wake up!

Then my son gets up at 6:00 a.m. so that'll wake me up... so I might just sleep in the rest of the morning (as much as I can with the kittens not sleeping as long during the days anymore), and then go grocery shopping in the afternoon. I was hoping to hit Kohl's, Walmart, Dollar Tree, and the UPS store.

Tonight the shower leak got on my nerves and I told myself that I really should put my big girl pants on and just call a plumber already and also call an electrician to get those outlets replaced and a new one installed on the front porch.  I was all full of good intentions, easy to do when it's 1:00 a.m. and you can't actually call anyone then.  Now it's almost 1:30 a.m. and all that inspiration and big girl talk is out the window already.  I just need to leave the house for a week myself and have Greg take care of all that while I'm gone. It's incredible how stressed I get over having work done on the house. It's because this crappy house that we adore has so many issues, none of them are easy to fix, all of them cost a lot of money (as in A LOT of MONEY!), I don't like having people in my house, I don't like calling people on the phone and let me say it again, I don't like spending money unless it's to buy fun stuff like food and scented candles :)  I know I'm annoying someone right now and trust me, I'm annoying myself.  Greg had said he would call the plumber, stay home from work to oversee everything and make sure I didn't stress over it but those were big words and he hasn't done it.

Maybe I'll call the electrician. That's really a simple job, all I have to do is inventory which outlets need to be replaced because some of them are so worm that any plugs will just fall off them.  It's just a matter to go around the house and try out every outlet. I already had some changed years ago. We pay for that whole Homewire Protection Plan on our electric bill every month and have an "allowance" to spend every year that is not cumulative and I think the last time I had them replace outlets has to be at least 5 years ago!  Money down the drain! And installing an outlet on the front porch will cost us money but it's doable. He just needs to knock out a whole in the outside wall and siding as our sink is under the window and there's an outlet under there for an old "Hot Water" device on our kitchen sink that is ancient and that we unplugged when we bought the house so the kids wouldn't scald themselves. I'm thinking he could piggy back off that.  When I had the outlet installed off the back porch, it cost us about $300 but it's been so nice having it there. So I'm thinking something along the same price.

I just checked the website while I was at it and we are covered for outlets, switches and other small repairs up to $1,000 a year. Installing a new outlet isn't included, though. It's got to be a repair job. However, their electrician will give us a 15% discount over his regular rate for that job.

We have the Home Wiring Repair Essential
On to my To Do List, I've updated it to reflect what I did accomplish this weekend! Good thing, too, because if I don't get some sleep soon, I won't be up to doing anything today.

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 new ones
    • Make "No Soliciting" sign for front door and another one for the other front door (we have two)
  • Cleaning/Decluttering:
    • Dust the bedrooms (including son's fan) - in progress
    • Declutter linen closet
    • Clean kitchen cabinets - Partly done
    • Declutter the top of the fridge
    • Mend items in mending basket (add Greg's hat)
    • Declutter shelves over printer stand 
    • Declutter storage bench 
    • Clean the fridge
    • Declutter gardening supplies chest
    • Defrost the freezer - scrapped off the top of the ice layer. Will need to defrost the whole thing.
    • Vacuum living room carpet 
    • Sweep/vacuum downstairs bathroom
    • Vacuum master bedroom
    • Vacuum upstairs hallway
    • Vacuum main stairs
    • Do the dishes (Friday) - Done
    • Do the dishes (Saturday) - Done
    • Do the dishes (Sunday)
    • Iron Greg's clothes (Sunday) - Done
    • Finish putting the laundry away
    • Clean window over the kitchen sink
    • Clean sliding door windows
    • Clean entry room front windows
    • Put up pictures on Art Room's walls
  • Cooking/Baking/Preserving:
    • Write a menu - Done
  • Entertainment
    • Plan an outing to Leu Botanical gardens or Bok Tower Gardens
    • Sign up for ranger hikes in local parks
  • Errands:
    • Take items to the dump
    • Need to order cat food from vet's
    • Buy kitten formula from Tractor Supply Co (Monday night) - Done
    • Do Grocery Shopping/Errands Part 1: Kohl's, Walmart, Murphy USA, Dollar Tree, UPS store, RaceTrac - Done
  • Gardening/outdoors:
    • Transplant ferns into bare patch in front lawn to make shady planter
    • Scrub patio pavers with bleach to remove mildew (this might have to wait until the months when it's not quite so hot!)
    • Pull the raspberries and add roses in pots in their place
    • Add mulch to the vegetable garden 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
    • Trim grass behind the hedge - Done
    • Trim weeds alongside the berm - Done
    • Pull the rest of the dead tomato plants 
    • Pull weeds off stone path
    • Plant passion flower vine seeds
    • Refill green bird feeder
    • Pour weed killer on weeds on patio - Pulled them instead :)
    • Harvest the peanuts - Done
    • Refill the hummingbird feeders
    • Grease poles with Vaseline
    • Pull weeds from pots - Partly Done
    • Turn the composting bin
  • Health:
    • Call gyneco to make annual appointment - I'll do that once I'm more comfortable with my weight because I know they'll be nagging me about it anyway.
    • Use recumbent bike 
    • Do 5 min of strength exercises  
    • Log food into My Fitness Pal 
    • Record exercise in Walgreens Balance Rewards
    • Weigh myself (Wednesdays)
  • Kittens
    • Feed them every 4-6 hours- Done
    • Weigh them (5 p.m.) - Done
  • 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
    • Greg to call plumber
    • Wash the bathroom ceiling with bleached water
    • Remind Greg to re-secure chicken wire to AC unit and also to block off opening under front of the house
    • Scrub mildew off front of the house (porch, behind bushes, front stairs)
    • Install white beadboard in laundry room (will need to measure and purchase)
    • Install new stick-on tiles in laundry room (will need to remove ancient ones first)
    • Paint laundry room cabinets
    • Get Greg to fix/remove rotten wood on front porch
    • Make a list of which outlets need to be replaced and call Duke Energy Homewire Protection to schedule appointment
    • Ask electrician for estimate on installing outlet on front porch
    • Ask Greg to make me new tiled table for electric roaster on front porch
    • Get on flat roof, sweep it, and clean out the front gutter
    • Ask Greg to install gutter screens on the front gutter
    • Have Greg block the opening in the back fence
    • Mend my fanny pack!
  • 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 blog photos from June through August 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 upstairs
    • File paperwork
    • Write new letter to great grand aunt (include kitten photos)
    • Go through the genealogical material crate
    • Scan what needs to be scanned (if anything)
    • Work on photo album for daughter's graduation
    • Fill out FAFSA for daughter (October 1st)
    • Return solar batteries to Amazon (printed label)  - Done
    • Reply to my French BFF's email
    • Write and mail baby card - Done
    • Write and mail get well card
    • Install Firefox on son's PC and print avocado coupon via Swagbucks
    • Give Greg his passport (Sunday) - Done
    • Input new receipts into spreadsheet
    • Call my mom this week

  • Greg decided to buy breakfast at the airport and he will expense it.

  • My son took a packed lunch to school, including that free cheeseburger I got for him yesterday.

  • I brewed a pot of half decaf  with the decaf coffee I had won from Wawa.

  • Bath & Body Works sent me an offer to get a free pocketback sanitizer with any purchase, today only and in stores only. Well, I'll be passing the store so I'll stop in and see if I can buy something inexpensive to put in a stocking.  Or maybe the candles are still on sale but I doubt it.

  • I took a moment to file the coupons that I had printed and clipped this weekend prior to leaving on my shopping trip.

  • I emailed the link to a pdf copy of the Florida Driver's Handbook to my son, who will be taking his permit exam (hopefully) in early 2017.  One day they're babies, the next they're getting ready to drive!

  • I poured my 2nd mug of coffee in a travel mug and brought along some peanut butter crackers because I was hungry. I left at 11 a.m. and didn't want to eat lunch out!

  • I left for my errands:
    • Save A Lot:
      • I stopped mainly to see if anything was on clearance and I lucked out!
        • The papaya was back down to $0.69/lb and there was only 1 left so I grabbed it.
        • The store manager was stocking produce so I asked him when he's get butternut squash and pumpkins in stock since they usually have them by now.  He thought that he might be getting some pumpkins tomorrow. I'll check back on Wednesday but will only buy them if the price is very good.
        • I found a caramel nut coffee cake on 50% clearance ($1.50)
        • Then in the bakery section, I saw a blueberry pie with a sell-by date of today that wasn't marked down. I checked the coffee cake and the sell-by date was today so I asked the cashier if I could get the pie for 50% off too and she said sure. ($1.64)
        • There were 4 pepperoni pizzas with a sell-by date of 9/18 that weren't marked down. I grabbed two and the cashier also sold them to me at 50% off. Woohoo but now I have to redo my whole menu for the week, lol.($5.99 for both)
        • Lastly, I bought 1 more package of chicken breasts at $0.99/lb because the price is so good.  I have chicken on the menu for this week so I just won't defrost any.
      • I was tempted to get some Tropicana fruit punch that had also been discounted to just $0.85 for my son (for a 1/2 gallon) but I put it back because I remembered that I didn't have much room in the fridge anyway.
      • My OOP was $14.51 and I paid with USAA Visa for 10% back in Rewards.

    • RaceTrac:
      • My tank was about 1/4 empty so I decided to top it off. Gas was $2.07 a gallon in Clermont. I earned some RaceTrac loyalty points on my app, and a new receipt with which to get a freebie. I also charged it to USAA Visa for 10% back in rewards.
      • I redeemed a survey reward code for a free Cinnabun Long John doughnut for my son.
Hmm, the frosting stuck to the paper. I hate it when it
    • Kohl's:
      • I had a 30% off discount that they had mailed me and $10 in Kohl's cash from Discover Deals.  
      • I looked for a shower curtain for my downstairs shower stall since the one I had bought last year was badly stained by mildew and it didn't come off in the wash :(  I saw a couple that I liked but even after the Kohl's cash, they would have cost me from $10 on up.  For a piece of cloth.  Ugh.
      • Then I checked the clearance section and on the very bottom shelf, aaaaaaallll the way at the back, I found one white gauzy shower curtain marked down to $11.99 "as is".  The package didn't look like it had been opened, though. I took it out of the package and inspected it very quickly and didn't see anything wrong with it, save that it's white and I really wanted something light blue. I guess I could dye it.  The price was right so I want to the register.
      • I was behind a woman whom I complimented on the top she was buying. She had an armful of merchandise and seemed impatient, started commenting on how terrible it was to shop at Kohl's. I commiserated that it always took so long to check out at Kohl's. She replied "well, that's because it's the South!". I'm not FROM here but I've lived here for 30 years and I love it so she started to piss me off.  I told her that I'd lived here 30 years and Kohl's was the only store where it consistently took forever to check out, that all the other stores were pretty fast, actually.  She grunted and said she was from the North (but of course!).  I said "no offense but the worst is when all the snow birds from the North descend here after Thanksgiving and I can't wait for them to go back up North because they clog all the store aisles" so she said "Not me!  I HATE it here. I'm only here because my dad lives here. I hate everything about Florida: the heat, the humidity..." (and I thought to myself, Florida is beautiful and a great state to live in, the only thing that makes it unbearable apart from the humidity is know-it-all blowhards like YOU!). But I laughed it off and then she went to the other register and I was frankly glad to be rid of her.  Oh and she also said as we were talking about snow birds "I hope that I don't get old for a very long time" but she looked older than me.  I told her "Me too but a lot of times I realize that I'm already old."  She didn't seem to like this. What a stick in the mud. I had started the conversation by paying her a compliment and she managed to put me in a bad mood with just 2 minutes of conversation.  And she's from Ohio, by the way, Columbus. Where Greg's parents and sister live. Nice ambassador for that city, let me tell you.  Grrr.
      • Anyhoo, after all that I had a young cashier who was very pleasant and put me back in a good mood :) My shower curtain rang up for $7.19!  So I grabbed a chocolate bar because I didn't want to have to come back to use like $2 in Kohl's cash. The chocolate was $3.95. After Kohl's cash and the 30% discount, my OOP was $0.98!  I paid with my Kohl's charge card. The chocolate will be given to one of the kids for St Nicolas.
      • As I left, I spotted a very old gentleman in a motorized wheelchair, sitting at the entrance of the parking lot. He had an umbrella to protect him from the sun and had displayed some frames of some kind around his wheelchair and he had a small homemade sign that said "Help a veteran".  The way he was placed, I hadn't seen him when I drove him and as I drove away, there just wasn't a good spot to stop. I could have made a U-turn but I thought "I'm going to Walmart next, I'll get him some water or something and come back afterwards to slip him some cash."  And then wouldn't you know that I completely forgot about it until just now?!  I feel terrible! It was very sad and I didn't get the impression that it was a scam. more like he was selling things from his house to make some money.  Ugh. Poor guy!

    • Walmart:
      • I stocked up on items since I was paying with my Swagbucks gift cards and they were going to be free to me anyway.
      • I looked at the deli clearance section and found some fresh sliced cajun turkey marked down 50% to $2.20.
      • In the bakery clearance section, I grabbed a loaf of French bread for 50 cents, a box of Red Velvet mini cupcakes with cream cheese frosting for $1.49 (for my daughter, she loves those), and a box of sour cream donut holes for $1.49.
      • In the seafood section, I got 2 packages of fresh Atlantic salmon marked down 50% at $4.63 each. It's been ages since we had salmon! I froze it.
      • I grabbed bananas at $0.56/lb and 2 avocados from Mexico at $0.98 each. I had a BOGO coupon and it actually deducted $1.45!
      • I needed some spices/seasonings so I grabbed some smoked paprika and seasoned salt.
      • I wanted pecan chips for several dishes that I'll be making, but when I compared prices by the oz, the whole pecans that I found in the produce section were cheaper than the Fisher's pecan chips in the baking section. I'll be processing them in my food processor.
      • Breakfast sausages were more expensive than at Aldi or SAL but again, free to me :)
      • Stocked up on whole wheat flour to make Grape Nuts.  The price at the register was higher than on the shelf but I didn't realize it right away and I couldn't remember the price on the shelf anyway and it's Walmart so I wasn't going to stand in line at Customer Service. I did use (4) $1.50 off coupons.
      • My OOP was $39.59 and it was all FREE to me!  I debated, before going in, just paying with my USAA Visa since the 10% rebate is only good until some time in November and keeping the gift cards for after that, but then I thought "what's the point in going to Walmart, then?  Their prices are higher than other places!".
      • I texted my daughter to ask her to check in on the kittens for me. They were asleep :)

    • Murphy USA:
      • I redeemed a coupon for a free can of Quick Strike Energy Drink. I only get those when they're free. I needed it today!  I got the calorie-free version, which didn't have a flavor listed on the can but it's like a lemon-lime soda and it's not bad at all.
Those things never give me more energy though. I think
I'm either immune to them OR it's all just sugar water and a lot
of P.R. lies!
    • Dollar Tree:
      • I wanted to replenish my stock of 8x10 photo frames and I found 2 of them in black, which are the ones that I like.
      • I also grabbed the last can of cherry pie filling, a bottle of zero calorie hazelnut flavoring for coffee (to try it), and some cayenne pepper that I thought I needed but some to find out I already had a spare canister at home!
      • Also, the seasoned salt was only... $1 at Dollar Tree when I "paid" $2.48 for the same quantity at Walmart. Grrr.
      • OOP was $5.14 and I paid with USAA Visa (10% back)

    • Bath & Body Works:
      • I had intended to buy something cheap and get the free pocketbac, but aside from other pocketbacs, the cheapest item was the hand foaming soap on sale for $3.00. I still think it's too expensive for hand soap so I left without buying anything (the candles were back at full price).

    • UPS Store:
      • I dropped off the envelope with the solar batteries that I was returning to Amazon. 

  • I came home, documented my trip, chatted with my daughter, and put everything away.  Then I warmed up leftovers for my lunch because I was famished. The kittens were awake but sitting quietly so I didn't make eye contact as I ate my lunch.  And then I fed them :)  My daughter helped me burp and cuddle them.  My lunch was pasta leftovers from last night and the rest of a salad I had made late last week.  I drank the energy drink that I had gotten for free.

  • As I was catching up on the news, I received a call from my friend whom I'm supposed to meet for lunch later on this week.  She used to me by supervisor at the local elementary school the year that I worked there as a Family/School Liaison.  She is now a real estate agent and investor and has been talking to me for a long time about possibly doing administrative work for her but right now she doesn't make enough to be able to pay an assistant. However, she knows of a Norwegian investor who needs someone to do some administrative work so she referred me to him. I'm waiting for him to call me back. She made it sound like it wouldn't be much work just picking up flyers from a printer and stuffing envelopes and mailing them, that sort of thing, so we'll see what he says.  The pay would be "on commission" which means, according to her, that if he does sell one of the properties that he's trying to sell, I'd get some kickback.  Again, I have to talk to him about it. It'd be nice to have a project that brings in some income and yet if it doesn't work out, it's not like I'm actively looking for a job. I like that I could work from home.

  • My son borrowed my bike to go volunteer at the library.  I asked him to pick up the DVD set that was waiting for me.

  • I guess dinner will now be pizza and a salad!  I have a cantaloupe that I bought last week that I will cut up too.

  • Middle Son called me to ask if he could come over tonight "to visit the kittens". Nice. Not to visit his mom or anything!  He has to work tomorrow morning so he was going to drive back to his dad's in East Orlando tonight to spend the night there, but I told him he could sleep in my bedroom (his old bedroom!) since I've been sleeping on the couch. So he'll probably do that.

  • Amazon notified me that they will be issuing an advance refund for the batteries since they got the UPS notification that the package is on its way. Woohoo!

  • My daughter received the other new-to-her phone that she bought after Amazon gave her the advance refund on the phone she was returning. It's a Samsung Galaxy Note. It's huge but it looks very cool. Now I have phone envy, lol, and it's only for the camera part of it :)

  • I submitted my Walmart receipt to the SavingsCatcher via their website. My receipt is very faded/didn't print very clearly so I'm thinking that any rebates that I submit might be denied. We'll see.

  • I submitted my Walmart receipt for rebates on MobiSave and SavingStar but it's so faded... Also, I uploaded the MobiSave offers just about an hour after I did my shopping so that's another reason why they might reject my receipt :(

  • I scheduled the phone interview for tomorrow at 2 p.m. He has a local Florida phone number although he's in Norway so it won't cost me anything.

  • I drove to Tractor Supply Co, just a couple of miles from my house, to buy 2 cans of KMR kitten replacement milk during the Friends & Neighbor sale and saved 15% off. I charged the ~$23 OOP to my USAA Visa card (10% back). The sale started at 5 p.m. so I couldn't stop by earlier.

  • I received the latest samples I had ordered from As a reminder, they are releasing new ones tomorrow (Tuesday) at noon. As always, the early bird catches the worm.
Starbucks Caramel Latte Kcup kit (I used it in my regular coffee pot but only used 1/2 the Kcup for the whole small pot. It barely tastes like coffee, lol.)
2 samples of pain relief cream (only one pictured)
Coupons for Beyond cat food - I will pas along to the shelter, as I plan on buying my kittens' food from the vet's, like the older cats'.
  • I received the $10 Netgear rebate for the ethernet switchbox that I had to buy when I got the new router.

  • Lowe's mailed us a coupon for $10 off a $50 purchase.  Aargh, I might need to do some gardening after all!

  • We had a nice rainstorm at 6:25 p.m., right after my youngest son had biked back from the library. It looked like it was going to rain when he left so the librarians lent him an umbrella :) They look after him, it's so nice!  Of course, I would have gone to pick him up, I always tell him to call me if it's raining!

  • Change of plans: I'm way too tired to make a salad (!) so we're just having pizza and cantaloupe.

  • A Slickdeals user shared a Kellogg's Family Rewards code worth 100 KFR points: SUMMERPTS4UDIVAS

  • Driscoll's Consumer Support replied to my email from yesterday and emailed me the link to a new $1.00 off coupon that I was able to print twice :)

  • Gas and tolls for Greg to drive to the airport, that he always refuses to expense. Ticks me off each time!
  • Hot water for 2 loads of kitty laundry
  • Electricity to run the dryer since I want the towels to be nice and fluffy!
  • Gas to run errands

  • I was overcharged for the flour at Walmart, but the avocado coupon rang up for 50 cents higher than it should have so it's probably even.
  • I completely forgot to go back to give money to the old veteran or even to buy him a drink like I had told myself I would do. When I go shopping, I'm on autopilot and I follow my list. Especially when I've had as little sleep as I've had last night. Still, I feel terrible for the poor guy.
  • I had updated my Walmart app and now I can't log in there anymore!  I CAN log in to their website just fine, just not the app.  Other users commented on the app reviews that they had had to reset their account password for it to work. It makes no sense since my password works fine on the website on the laptop.  Grrr.
  • My visit with Middle Son is kind of a failure. He was discussing his work situation and his roommate and the fact that they're both broke so I asked if he would apply at UPS as I had texted him this afternoon that UPS is hiring in Orlando for package handler positions and I've always heard that UPS pays very well. Instead of investigating, he shut down the idea right away because he's very comfortable at Universal Studios and thinks that he's making a lot of money. He's making $700 a month working about 25 hours a week, according to him. I'm trying to make him realize that his "lots of money" is really nothing to feel comfortable about and that without the net of his father subsidizing a lot of his cost of living, he would be in a lot of trouble and that emergencies happen to people all the time.  But he didn't like the advice and didn't want to hear it. This is the kid who I sent money to a couple of weeks ago because he couldn't afford the gas to come visit his girlfriend. This is very frustrating to me that there is no vision to build a better financial future and no appreciation or will to try to see a different point of view.  So in the end he shut me down and I'm not sure that he's still spending the night. Oh well.

  • Looked up the information on the HomeWire service :)
  • Started writing a menu
  • Kitten duty at 2:30 a.m.
  • Started a load of kitty laundry
  • Got up to say goodbye to Greg
  • Got up to day have a nice day today to my son
  • Kitten duty at 8:30 a.m.
  • Changed their bedding
  • Posted Day Book post
  • Finished writing the menu for the week
  • Updated an app on my phone
  • Started a new load of laundry
  • Filed the coupons that I had clipped
  • Ran errands
  • Documented my trip
  • Put everything away
  • Kitten duty
  • Submitted Walmart receipt to SavingsCatcher
  • Updated blog
  • Received a call from a friend
  • Tried to set up a phone interview for a prospective part-time job
  • Kitten bath duty!
  • Looked up printing information from Staples in case that's needed for the job
  • Looked up USPS postage prices for same reason. I buy Forever Stamps so I have no idea of the cost of a stamp nowadays ($0.47).
  • Talked to Middle Son on the phone
  • Checked the mail
  • Texted with Greg as he had arrived at his hotel safely
  • Prepped my bedroom for Middle Son
  • Baked the pizza for dinner
  • Emailed Alison about molasses at Dollar Tree
  • Printed a coupon
  • Kitten duty with Daughter and Middle Son

  • Back in the saddle again, I have to log my food today and try to exercise but I'm starting the day with very little sleep AND I'm going to run errands so... that might not happen.

  • It was so cruel of them to park next to me at Walmart!  Best.doughnuts.ever!

  • For this article in the Daily Commercial today.  75 years of marriage. Wow. That brought tears to my eyes!  What an interesting life they've led, too.
  • For my friend being so solicitous of me. She knows I don't need the money but she thinks so highly of me that she talks me up all the time!  She's an extremely nice woman and a good friend!
  • For my daughter's help when the kitten had pooped everywhere and I was expecting a phone call.
  • For my son's help in picking up my DVD from the library.
  • For Greg's safe arrival in Canada.

People who talk at nauseam about rearranging their furniture make me roll my eyes. However, I have found myself rearranging the location of the litter box in the playpen at nauseam these past couple of days. My strategy? Wherever they pee in the playpen, I put the litterbox on there next. It doesn't seem to work as no one peed in the litterbox yesterday, if I recall properly. This morning I added another couple of paper towels soaked with their pee (courtesy of Tabby Kitty) and buried it under some more litter. We'll see if that works. Update: it didn't!

The boys are in there but they didn't do anything.  We did have pee pretty much in all 4 corners of the playpen today, though, and a situation with poop as well!

Also, I talk about the kittens and their poop at nauseam so feel free to roll your eyes at me.  That's what the kids do!  Whenever I open my mouth to relay a kitten story, they interrupt me and ask if it's going to involve poop because if so, they don't want to hear it. ROFLMAO!

This Monday morning finds the kittens larger and more energetic, sleeping a little less. But they're so good, most of the time they're very quiet, just sitting in the playpen looking at the world (or me) or playing together.  Princess Poopy Bottom, especially, tries to saunter away awkwardly and engage her brothers in play, it's so darn cute!

This morning I had just fed Tabby Kitty so he was resting, replete, on the couch.  I decided to change the bedding before feeding the other two, so I put their box on the ground and put them in there, It usually gives me a couple of seconds before they get out and then they just wobble around a little but never more than a foot or two away.  Today I put the box down, turned to grab the dirty towel from the playpen and felt a breeze by my foot... seriously... both of them were sprinting out of the box and almost already out of the living room by the time I got them. We have a large home with lots of hiding places for little kittens so I'm glad I realized they were gone in an instant!  They are so much more confident on their feet, it's incredible!  Luckily they haven't learned to jump yet so I put them on the couch next to their brother, which gave me a few more seconds of respite and time to change the bedding. When I turned around, they were all at the edge of the couch, staring at what I was doing with their big eyes, lol.  They're like little squeaky toys :)

Later on this afternoon... So I was expecting the Norwegian guy to call me back and of course the kittens had woken up but they were very quiet so I was ignoring them so they wouldn't start demanding food.  Then my son came to tell me that he was going to the library, and from his standpoint he could see that there was poop all over the towel at the bottom of the playpen. Arrgh. Tabby Kitty had decided to poop after all!  So I went into crisis mode (only because I was thinking the phone would ring at any moment!) and my daughter came. She was in charge of drying the kittens after I bathed them in the laundry room.  Thankfully they are all excellent bathers!  So we got them washed and dried, I changed the towel, we got them situated in their box covered by a towel so they wouldn't get chilled, and I washed their climbing toy that they never use but somehow one of them put a poopy paw on anyway!  Then, of course, the phone never rang!

My view of the playpen from the couch. Can you see them sitting there just looking at me?  Lol.

Crisis mode: my son had just told me about the poop and they saw the kids standing there so
they were desperate to be picked up. At one point, all 3 of them were climbing "the wall".  But they had walked in the poop
so I had to bathe them one by one first.  The fun never ends, I tell ya.
Later on tonight, Tabby Kitty had the squirts again, quite a bit of it. He's been constipated for days and now it's the opposite. I'm concerned but we're going to the vet's tomorrow morning.  I gave him another bath, we cuddled with him, and tonight I put him in his own pet carrier, in the playpen, to keep the other kittens away from him so they don't lick his butt and get sick too.

Instead of sleeping in their box, the other two kittens are huddled together against the door to the carrier.  Awwww.

What drives you up the wall these days?


  1. Sounds like you had quite a day between not being able to sleep till late, having to get up early, going shopping, encountering grumpy shoppers, and dealing with the kitty poop crisis! Sorry your Middle Son isn't willing to listen to you about applying for the UPS job. It's hard to know what to do when our children don't take our advice, except step back and let them make their own decisions and deal with the consequences. I hope you have a restful night, tonight, and a good day, tomorrow.

    1. I probably should learn to zip my mouth because I have a tendency to lecture and they tune me out anyway. But it's so frustrating to see him make the same type of mistakes over and over again. It's been like that since 2nd grade, really, so it's not a new behavior. Just same old, same old but in a different theme. I wish he would recognize the pattern because the consequences are always the same!

  2. I hope you got more sleep last night. I hate it when I'm wide awake at night. And I like hearing you go on and on about the kittens. Keep us updated. :)

    1. I did get some more sleep, thank you, but after today I'm exhausted again. Hopefully I'll fall asleep before my mind starts rehashing the sad stuff that happened today, otherwise I'll be up all night again. It's really annoying!

      Thanks for not being annoyed at all the kitten talk! And btw, I didn't mean you when I was talking about people rearranging their furniture, lol. Thinking about how you're going to fit your furniture in your new house is completely fine! As a matter of fact, I hope you'll post pictures when it's all done. We also have an awkward room, which is the Entry Room aka the Cat Room aka the Art Room. It's had many roles. It used to be a 1 car garage but now it had windows on both ends, the main entrance that we use, the entrance to the breezeway to the older part of the home (living room, most bedrooms) and entrance to the country kitchen, laundry room, daughter's bedroom. It ought to be looking nice since it's the first room people see when they walk in, but I don't like people visiting me so we're the ones who see it. It's always been mainly the kids' playroom and since we have cats and i don't want cat hair all over the place, it's also become the cats' domain and main area. The furniture is either very old and stained and cat scratched or from a thriftstore. I've tried moving the furniture around a few times, but my youngest son also spends most of his time there since that's where his computer is, and he hates change.

      Anyhoo. Sorry for the babbling, I'm really tired!

  3. You have had the most exciting day. You got lots of free food, free samples in the mail, gift card in the mail, a visit from Middle son and a possible part time job opportunity. And Greg has only been away for one day. You make the most of your errands. It always amazes me. I hope you get lots of sleep tonight.

    By the time you read this, you will already have been to the Vet's office. I am anxious to get a full report.

    1. They got a clean bill of health and I was told that I'm going a good job. Not thanks to them though, I'm so frustrated with those 2 vets. Their staff is wonderful and I've been their client forever so I don't want to move to another practice (plus it's only 10 minutes away), but I'm over them at the same time. Maybe I'm just too tired, I don't know. But I was relieved to hear that they didn't have any concerns about them. Miss Poopy Bottom had a stool tonight and I didn't see any worms in it so I'm thinking all 3 are clear, which I already knew but it's a nice confirmation. Next appointment is in 4 weeks and they'll get their first shots. Spaying/neutering when they're 6 months so about February/March.

      I really need to get to sleep now. My eyes are all droopy! Good night!

  4. Does this mean that you'll be keeping all the kittens? I hope so the family seems to love them all and hopefully the older cats will become more loving towards them if they give a little bit older

    1. LOL, the second I laid eyes on them, there was never any doubt in my mind that we would keep all three of them! So yes, yes, yes. They're part of our family :) The other cats will just have to deal with it, hahaha.

  5. I hate it when I can't sleep at night...luckily, it doesn't happen very often. I know I had a very clever comment on the tip of my tongue (fingertips?), but I saw the Godiva chocolate you posted and can't think straight any more.

    All your fault.

    1. Dang it, Pixel! I had forgotten all about it, thanks for reminding me about it! I was thinking "Godiva?! what is she talking about?!" I put it away with the Christmas stuff as soon as I took the photo and, out of sight, out of mind... unless it's in my kitchen and then I never seem to forget about it. OK, trying to forget about it again right now...


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