Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Domestic Tuesday! ~ Tuesday 2/21/17

Ugh, I have so many things that I need to be doing but here I am, at 8:23 a.m., sitting on my back patio with my laptop and my mug of flavored coffee, listening to the bird calls and hitting the snooze button on the alarm that tells me it's time to move the laundry to the dryer.

Well, at least there's that: I've started the laundry!  It's terribly overcast right now and it feels humid. Indeed we have some rain in the forecast for today so I think I'll just use the dryer today. Lazy and unfrugal but the kittens would just knock everything over if I set the racks in the house.

This afternoon I'm taking my son to the pediatrician for his annual check-up. I hope neither of us picks up any germs while we're there, I always seem to get under the weather after I've visited their office. I have anti-germ gel in my purse and we'll definitely be using that every time we touch something. I'm usually not paranoid about that but Youngest Son and I both were already sick once this year and we don't want to get sick again!  I might get him a flu shot if they're still available, although it's kind of late in the season for it so maybe we'll skip it, we'll see.

My brother emailed me that the house they went to visit yesterday was a no-go. The setting was very pretty but they found much needed to be done on the house, despite the pictures on the website that were, according to him, several years old. So it's back to the drawing board for them.

Youngest Son was very dour this morning, more so than usual in the morning. I guess he really didn't want to go to school or something.  He did blow me a kiss when we got to school, though. He's just not a morning person at all.

Greg never did give him a driving lesson yesterday afternoon, although he did hop on his computer to play video games while I was visiting with Middle Son.  I'm a little annoyed that it's been a month that our son has had his permit and he has yet to start teaching him how to drive a stick shift. I guess that's something else that I'll have to do.

Middle Son texted me the link to a site with pictures taken with the same camera that I had just ordered, last night.  He was very surprised when I told him I had just placed the order because I usually wait on those expensive purchases until a better deal comes along, and so I did wake up feeling very guilty that I had spent so much money on something so... not a need! But this is actually why I pulled the trigger last night!  I'm very good at talking myself out of buying something for myself and then whining for months about the performance of my current equipment and then finally buying it when all this time I could have been enjoying the new "tool".  I do take a lot of pictures and have been very frustrated with my camera's shortcomings for what I was trying to do and I'm not sure that I'll ever be able to understand the dSLR settings on my other camera so... yeah, I'm still trying to justify the purchase in my head!

The garden looks terrible. Plants need to be watered but again, it's supposed to rain today and tomorrow so I'll wait. There are weeds to be pulled, those self-watering bins that are breaking down really look terrible. I'll need to spend time in the garden in March.  Yes in March. It's February 22 and I only have 6 days to try to accomplish the rest of my February goals and it doesn't look good. Arrgh.

I guess this is a good time for me to segue into my...

  • Cut up the pork loin into roasts and freeze DONE
  • Give a driving lesson to my son with the stick shift this week
  • Update French blog
  • Sweep Cat Room DONE
  • Sweep breezeway DONE
  • Sweep exercise room DONE
  • Make my bed  DONE
  • Turn bread heels into bread crumbs
  • Earn Microsoft Rewards credits DONE
  • Input weight into WHBRHC DONE
  • Set 15 minute timer and try to accomplish as many chores as possible in that time  
  • Do the dishes by hand, drain/dry in the dishwasher (AFTER DINNER)
  • Do the laundry DONE
  • Fold the laundry DONE
  • Put the laundry away 
  • Watch "Spy in the Wild"
  • Clean fridge - cleaned the bottom shelf, cleaned the "main" shelf
  • Sweep the downstairs bathroom
  • Vacuum the upstairs bedrooms
  • Sweep/vacuum the main stairwell DONE
  • Make a dermatologist appointment for Youngest Son (after pediatrician apt)
  • Download all January pictures from my phone and camera to external drive halfway done!
  • Back up external drive to its own external drive!
  • Start a list of the electric outlets that I want to get replaced
  • Do my foot exercises 2X
  • Exercise at least 35 minutes on my bike  (weekdays only) 
  • Give USB drive to Teen librarian to put photos of Youngest Son on it
  • Move missing Music files from External Drive to my Laptop  DONE!
  • Move/reinstall missing software on new laptop in progress, moved all the files to the External Drive
  • Trying syncing my phone on new laptop DONE
  • Back-up my phone DONE
  • Reset phone to factory settings No need, I don't think, after all.
  • Upgrade to newer iOS  in progress
  • Read one of the library books
  • Clean upstairs litter box  DONE
  • Add Osmocote plant food to rose and hibiscus bushes
  • Water the garden if it doesn't rain before Thursday
  • Put away the clipped articles from Kiplinger's magazine 
  • Read new issue of Kiplinger's in progress
  • Wash kitchen windows
  • Vacuum the fridge's coils
  • Inventory the pantry
  • Inventory the freezers
  • Reorganize the gardening supplies area in breezeway
  • Purge file cabinet in progress (through "credit cards")
  • Take RaceTrac surveys 
  • Move fonts from external drive and reinstall on new laptop
  • Take my measurements
  • Look into transplanting hyacinths in garden - Moved them outside since Explorer has started to jump on mantelpiece :(
  • Scrub patio pavers with bleach (wear old clothes and shoes, gloves and goggles)
  • Finish decluttering exercise room shelves
  • Call my bank to consolidate my IRA accounts
  • Sit down with my daughter and show her how to file her taxes
  • Start on our tax return
  • Schedule an outing to P.E.A.R. Park and ask them about the trees from my backyard or look at the Audubon site that Pixel shared.
  • Write letter to my great aunt, with pictures
  • Make sure I receive the water bill from the city today
  • Call pediatrician's office to confirm today's appointment DONE
  • Obtain school physical form at pediatrician's DONE
  • Reply to my brother's email DONE

  • Youngest Son packed a lunch for school

  • I packed leftovers for Greg to take to work

  • School drop off went well.

  • I did 2 super loads of laundry on cold/cold.  I will use the dryer on the Auto Moisture Sensing setting, though, as we're supposed to get some rain today and I won't be here this afternoon to monitor the weather as the clothes finish to dry outside.

  • I used up a brown banana in my morning cereal today.

  • I earned a few Swagbucks but I'm not going to stress over meeting my 1st goal of 105 SB.

  • I didn't turn on the timer but I ended up doing quite a few things in about 10 minutes:
    • Switched the laundry
    • Called the pediatrician's office to confirm today's appointment
    • Plugged in the battery charger to recharge a camera battery
    • Put away the plastic baggies and cereal bags that had been hanging to dry for far too long!
    • Cut up the pork loin in two, saved one half for dinner later on this week and froze the other (in a cereal bag, of course, one that I had rewashed already a couple of times)
    • Looked for the frozen patties of pie crust for tonight's turkey pot pie but could only find one. I guess it'll only get a top crust!
    • In doing so, located a batch of peanut butter cookie dough that I had never used at Christmas so I'm defrosting it and will bake cookies for the kids later this week.
    • Decluttered the freezer a little by pulling several bags of chicken bones that I put in water in the crockpot to make stock.  I feel a little more "domestic" now :)
  • I was able to request a free sample of FiberOne bars from Pillsbury via the e-newsletter that they sent me, woohoo! 

  • I printed a coupon from their newsletter as well. Their system wanted my cell phone number to print the coupon and I don't trust that they don't use that to resell to spammers, another reason why I pay for a "home" line.  I put in that phone number and retrieve the code they texted me to that number to print the coupon.

  • It's a good thing that I did because a lot of times I'll just say "forget about it, then!". But when I went to retrieve the code, I had to turn on the "home" line that I keep turned off and found 5 voicemails. 4 were inconsequential, but the last one had just been left from our new online bank's security team who wanted us to call them ASAP about suspicious activity in our account!  Whaaaat?!  I tried to log in the account but it wouldn't let me log in at all.  Arrgh.  It was the longest 5-minute wait when I called but luckily all they wanted to do was make sure that the large deposit that was made via check (our emergency funds in case Greg loses his job) had indeed made by us.  Well, OK people, next time try not to give me a heart attack by making me think that the opposite happened, i.e. someone stole money from our account!  So they removed the hold and I was able to log in to the account and make sure everything was OK.  Phew!  I probably should put in my cell phone number as the main contact number, but I hate it when they share that with their "subsidiaries" and then I start getting calls for overdraft protection or what not, which is why I just put all kinds of alerts on the accounts, asking for emails every time even just $1 gets deducted from the account.  I also asked for emails when money gets deposited but it's not going to help me if they think we're mafiosos or drug dealers laundering money, right?

  • While I was on hold, I worked on the Microsoft Rewards credits to calm my nerves :)

  • I printed a new cereal coupon via Swagbucks.

  • I reused a bread bag to collect, carry and dispose of the contents of the upstairs litter box.

  • I entered my weight into Walgreens' Balance Rewards for Healthy Choices and earned 20 BR points.

  • A timesaver, in a way: instead of trying to figure out which music files I still hadn't moved to my new laptop, I just deleted ALL the music files from the new laptop and I'm in the process of just moving everything from my external drive to the laptop. It will take several hours, but it'll save me much aggravation.

  • As the files were being moved over the wifi, I couldn't be online so I swept:
    • the main stairs
    • the hall
    • the living room
    • the exercise room
    • the breezeway
    • the cat room
    • the kitchen

  • Observations: the vacuum cleaner is better at cleaning cat hair but scares the poop out of all the cats.  The broom is better at getting all the other dirt and faster than the vacuum and doesn't scare the kittens, who think it's a game and try to jump on the broom as I'm sweeping, play with the dirt collected in the pan as I go through the house, and generally are making (cute) nuisances of themselves :)

  • Yay!  The Arbor Day Foundation confirmed the shipment of the white fringetree that I had ordered for free from Duke Energy on Arbor Day!  I was just thinking recently that I probably wouldn't get it for some reason...

  • The librarians confirmed that they credited my son's volunteer hours for the Dungeons and Dragons Club to his ledger.  I'm confused as to why no one seemed to think this was volunteering when it was his idea to create the club, he brings his own D&D materials, he animates the club, designs the adventures, etc.  But, it's all taken care of now :) He needs at least 100 hours of volunteerism by the time he graduates high school to qualify for the highest level of Bright Futures Scholarship and so far he's earned 60 hours with D&D plus his weekly volunteer hours for shelving books.

  • For lunch, I heated up the leftover mashed potatoes from last week and cooked myself a couple of fried eggs. I also had 1/2 a papaya.

  • I earned 100 KFR points by entering bonus code WARM-UPWI-THPT-SNOW  into my Kellogg's Family Rewards account (exp 2/26).

  • I was able to hang two pairs of Greg's work pants as they came out of the dryer so I won't have to iron them, woohoo!

  • Since most of the wifi was being used by the music files being transferred to my laptop, I watched over-the-air TV while I folded the laundry and mended a pair of shorts.

  • Swagbucks sent me the $25 Walmart gift card that I had ordered last week :)

  • I received the cat scratchers and cat grass kits from Amazon so I started one of the cat grass kits and put it in a closet for a few days for it to germinate.

  • I printed a coupon that Gold'n Plump emailed me.  

  • I took my son to the pediatrician for his check-up. We were seen very quickly, he received a clean bill of health and a flu shot.  We didn't have a co-payment since it was covered at 100% by our insurance.

  • On our way home we stopped by RaceTrac and redeemed a survey reward code for a free eclair donut for his snack.

  • I received a 20% off CVS store coupon in the mail.

  • I wanted to try syncing my phone to my new laptop using iTunes but didn't trust that it wouldn't wipe everything off my phone so I spent (too much) time inputting all my Contacts info into an Excel spreadsheet, just in case.  I was able to update some stuff and also delete Contacts I no longer needed while I did this. Spring phone cleaning!

  • Then I moved all my pictures from my iPhone to my external drive.

  • And then it was time to cook dinner. The potpie thing wasn't going to happen so Greg suggested soup and sandwiches. I heated up cans of soup for him and my daughter, ravioli for my son, and I had some of that turkey/pasta/veggies leftovers. I gave us each a wedge of naan bread too.

  • After dinner I tried to sync my phone but iTunes wasn't recognizing my phone at all. Arrgh. Upon researching the issue, I found out it was a common problem with Windows 10. But of course.  I eventually located the proper instructions and it looks like, after about an hour of research and a lot of "aaargh!" and "ugh!", it might be working :)

  • Greg's team member decided to remain with their company instead of taking the other job. He will get a promotion in a few months and he was happy with that. Wow. Greg was sure he would be leaving. This is really great news both personally and professionally, because Greg really likes him and he's a great worker too.

  • Gas:
    • to drive Youngest Son to school
    • and tolls for Greg's commute
    • for my daughter to drive to her college class
    • to drive Youngest Son to the pediatrician's

  • Electricity:
    • I turned the AC back on at 2:30 pm. as it was getting warm in the house and I was leaving shortly thereafter anyway.

  • I decluttered my secret "snack" drawer (not so secret but it's mine only!) by eating the last pieces of saltwater taffy and the bar of chocolate with bacon and chips that my daughter had given me for Christmas.  Now I feel a little bleh.

  • And I'm skipping the exercise tonight as I really want to finish backing up my phone and syncing it before I go to bed.

  • No Spend Day

  • Requested a free sample of Fiber One bars from Pillsbury
  • Received the $25 Walmart gift card from Swagbucks
  • An eclair donut from RaceTrac for my son

  • Fed the kittens
  • Packed a lunch for Greg
  • Prepped his breakfast
  • Drove Youngest Son to school
  • Aired out the house
  • Started the laundry
  • Collected the trash and took the trash bin down to the curb for collection
  • Worked on my Rewards programs
  • Called the pediatrician to confirm appointment
  • Defrosted several items
  • Put away clean plastic baggies
  • Cut up and froze part of the pork loin
  • Made chicken stock in the crockpot
  • Returned a call to the online bank
  • Made my bed
  • Cleaned the upstairs litter box
  • Printed and uploaded more coupons
  • Moved music files over to my new laptop
  • Swept the main stairs, the hallway, the living room, the exercise room, the breezeway, the cat room and the kitchen
  • Replied to blog comments
  • Commented on other blogs and caught up on the news
  • Input some receipts into my spreadsheets
  • Folded the laundry
  • Mended a pair of shorts
  • Started one of the cat grass kits
  • Retrieved Youngest Son vaccination and health records to take to the pediatrician's 
  • Added the music folders to the iTunes library
  • Clipped and put away the coupons that I had printed, in my coupon organizer
  • Took my son to the pediatrician
  • Got him a flu shot
  • Got him a snack at RaceTrac
  • Worked on creating a back-up of my phone's Contacts
  • Texted my BFF
  • Downloaded all my January and February pictures from my phone to my external drive
  • Cooked dinner
  • Researched the iTunes problem
  • Backed up my iPhone
  • Updated my iOS on my phone
  • Email the city's utility department to find out why I haven't received our water bill yet
  • Updated my bank's app

  • Sleep was good.
  • Breakfast was a cup of Rice Krispies with a brown banana and a cup of @ ~2% stretched milk
  • Lunch was mashed potatoes and 2 fried eggs, half a papaya and the last Diet Coke.
  • Afternoon snack was chocolate, marshmallows, saltwater taffy... I was decluttering!  The good news is that there is none of this anymore.
  • Dinner was a bowl of pasta/turkey/veggies and a wedge of naan bread.
  • Foot exercises were performed
  • For my son's clean bill of health at the doctor's
  • For Greg's team worker remaining with the company because it means Greg won't be so stressed


  • A male cardinal came to the feeder this morning. He first ate at the green feeder, then hopped on one of my old tomato cages that's among the basil, for some reason and a few minutes later decided to go try the seeds from the cardinal feeder.  I'm hearing a lot of other birds but they haven't revealed themselves. I think most of the birds from my neighborhood probably prefer live insects to seeds.

It ended up being a pretty productive day after all!  I hope yours was as well.


  1. I am laughing at how you decluttered your snack drawer! :D

    It sounds like you had a very productive day, after all, once you got going. I, on the other hand, didn't do anything!

    Hope you have a fine day tomorrow, too.

    1. I firmly believe that when one isn't feeling well, one should rest! I hope you start feeling better soon, Bless.

  2. Sounds like you had a productive day. It always feels good when you accomplish a lot. Cardinals are very showy birds and I'm always happy when they pay me a visit.

  3. I saw a cardinal this morning on our bird feeder just outside our dining room window, but didn't get a picture of it. They never hold still for me. Silly birds, don't they know I'll only shoot them with a camera?

    You know, I've done the same thing with expensive purchases. I mull them over for so long. I had picked out my current SLR at one time, waited for it to go on sale and then thought it should go on an even better sale. Well, it didn't...went back to regular price. I was hopping mad! Had to wait three more (very long) months for the next sale. My husband just shook his head...

    1. That's another reason why I bought it on Monday night because I suspected it was $100 under suggested price because of Presidents' Day. I was right as the price has gone up to $597.99 now. However, I did see the same camera with a bunch of accessories at Adorama for the $497.99 price (although I don't know if shipping was free). Grrr.


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