Wednesday, March 8, 2017

International Women's Day ~ Wednesday 3/8/17

I had a horrible night (aches and pains, insomnia, kittens waking me up, you name it!) so when I saw this morning, that it's International Women's Day and that the organizer of today's March are calling on women to strike and not spend any money to protest our current government misogyny, I thought "Perfect, I'm not going shopping today!".

We're also supposed to wear red in solidarity but I'm already dressed and unless there's a red T-shirt in my laundry basket that I have to fold, I think I'll stay in the clothes I'm already wearing.  And I won't strike as it just means that I'll just have more chores to do later and we've already had our "Cook's Night Off" on Sunday night, plus I enjoy doing tasks for my husband and kids.  Despite my moaning about chores and such, I really love being a housewife at the same time as I'm thankful to the women who have made it possible for us to have a choice as to what we want to do in life.  I'm exercising my choice right now as I did when I announced to Greg that I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom :)

This means that my $5 Kohl's promotional gift will go unused as it expires today. Oh well.  Quite honestly, I'm not ready to go shopping as I still haven't sorted my coupons anyway.

So I'm sitting on the back porch again, until it gets too hot and I have to close the windows in the house and turn the AC back on, which will be about 11 a.m., according to my weather app.

I think I'll celebrate my Daughter, the future computer scientist, by making her cupcakes :)

  • Give a driving lesson to my son with the stick shift 
  • Clean bathroom ceiling
  • Add bleach to furnace line
  • Make my bed 
  • 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) 
  • Vacuum Youngest Son's bedroom
  • Make a dermatologist appointment for Youngest Son
  • 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 DONE
  • Exercise at least 35 minutes on my bike  (weekdays only) 
  • Read one of the library books in progress
  • Clean upstairs litter box DONE
  • Put away the clipped articles from Kiplinger's magazine 
  • Wash kitchen windows
  • Inventory the pantry
  • Inventory the freezers
  • Purge the top drawer of the file cabinet
  • Take RaceTrac surveys 
  • Take my measurements
  • 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
  • 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 DONE
  • Mail letter to my great aunt DONE
  • Go to airport to cash in my euros?!
  • Mend sliding door window screen
  • Finalize and mail letter to UPS CEO (add Amazon's comparison)
  • Plant and water the tree
  • Water the potted plants DONE
  • Water the pineapples
  • Add water to indoor pineapples
  • Make sure I get answer from the Educational Foundation director re: Daughter's scholarship about what paperwork to fill out She replied. I need to call her later this month.
  • Track my and Greg's IRAs for the IRS
  • Fix the brakes on my bike again 
  • Download all February pictures from phone, Canon camera, and Panasonic camera to external drive
  • Trim cats' nails DONE
  • Get the hummingbird feeders out of storage
  • Make hummingbird nectar
  • Get rid of cardboard boxes on the front porch  DONE
  • Make sure all pictures from the Canon camera are saved to external drive and then wipe out the memory card, format it for the Panasonic camera and swap memory cards
  • Reply to blog comments DONE
  • Sort coupons
  • Renew library books (on Thursday) Put reminder on my calendar for Thursday
  • Ask Youngest Son to pick up new library books for me (Thursday)
  • Add new information to kitchen wall calendar DONE
  • Wash my bedding
  • Fold laundry 
  • Put laundry away
  • Sweep Cat Room
  • Sweep Exercise Room
  • Clear out front porch
  • Wash the upstairs litter box washed all 4 litter boxes
  • Bake cupcakes for Daughter Decided not to
  • Freeze 2 loaves of pumpkin bread DONE
  • Check the air filters in the house and replace as needed DONE
  • Print health care form 1095  and put in tax file DONE
  • Schedule a credit card payment DONE
  • When I had insomnia in the middle of the night, I unlocked new offers in MobiSave and Ibotta.

  • My son packed his lunch to take to school.

  • I packed leftovers for Greg to take to work.

  • I baked 3 loaves of chocolate chip pumpkin bread yesterday so I didn't stop by RaceTrac on my way back from the high school. 

  • Perused the new Aldi and Save A Lot weekly ads online and adjusted my shopping list. I'll be loading up on berries this week!

Save A Lot
  • I had taken the recycling down to the curb last night, but as I bid goodbye to Greg this morning, I remembered that I had meant to take all the cardboard boxes that I was keeping on the front porch down to the curb to be taken away by the recycling truck as well. I was keeping them to use as weed barrier if I expanded my garden this Spring, but then I decided not to garden this season and Greg is going to take down the porch this weekend, so I needed to get rid of the boxes. I broke them down and they're ready for pick-up. I kept some smaller ones that my Daughter might need when it's time to pack up for college.

  • I was supposed to cook salmon tonight, that I was supposed to buy at Aldi today. Since I'm not going, I'm going to attempt making the chicken pot pie with the leftover chicken meat from last Saturday and leftover veggies from last week's corned beef disaster.  I'm not sure if I have pie crust patties in the freezer somewhere or not but I don't feel like looking for them, so I'll just make a pie crust from scratch this afternoon.

  • A comment left by Laura about using the sour milk to make pancakes reminded me that I had such pancakes in my freezer so I defrosted 4 small pancakes for my breakfast and used up the rest of the small bottle of maple syrup we had brought back from Cracker Barrel last month.  Decluttering my fridge and freezer and eating a yummy breakfast? Yes please!  I also made myself 2 fried eggs. Uh, to celebrate International Women's Day because the eggs symbolize fertility?  Yeah, that.

  • I still haven't heard back from the director of the Lake Educational Foundation (which is administering the college scholarship that I had won for my daughter several years ago) as to what paperwork they need us to fill out to release the scholarship to her, so I emailed her again.

  • I decided to brew myself a scandalous 2nd pot of hazelnut-flavored coffee because I wanted more and I wanted to indulge! Since I didn't sleep well, I need all the caffeine to be able to function today!

  • I reused 8 jugs of rainwater on my outdoor potted plants, which needed it badly. 

  • I was able to refill all 8 jugs from my rain barrel and now it's almost empty so we need a good rain.  There are a few rains in the forecast for the next 10 days but the % of risk is low, which means it probably won't rain at all.

  • Well it's now 11:07 a.m. and it doesn't feel all that hot to me (probably because of the clouds) so I think I might stay outside a little longer.  That way, I can pretend that I'm indeed on strike :)

  • I swear, some day I will remember that the "A" setting on my camera does not, in fact, mean "automatic"!  (it means "aperture", in case you didn't know). I was getting ticked off that my camera wasn't zooming anymore! Luckily, I realized it in time to switch it to the real automatic setting in time to take a picture of a pretty butterfly that was drinking from the verbena, nearby. Phew!  I have much to learn, grasshopper.

  • OK, it got too hot at noon so I headed back indoors.It's only 75F in the house so I'm keeping the windows open for a little longer.

  • Oooh, I had forgotten Ion TV (over the air channel) plays "Law & Order" episodes all day on Wednesdays!  I heated up the leftover spaghetti from last night, added some pesto to it, and plopped myself on the couch. OK so maybe I'll be striking after all.  Going in a carb coma is probably more accurate as I'll also be having the last piece of garlic bread!

  • I caught up with Mrs Daisy's blog (a new commenter) "Dirt Road Daisy". She's a new blogger, go visit her! She aims to blog about getting out of debt, building a learning community, her young family, all kinds of goodies that I think most of my readers will appreciate.

  • My daughter finally came down from her room and I wished her a Happy International Women's Day. She also said she didn't wear red since she wasn't planning on going anywhere today anyway. I confessed that I had planned on making cupcakes for her but that I now didn't feel like it anymore and she said it was fine :) It's the thought that counts!  She wanted to make French toast for lunch but I asked her to keep the few slices of bread we have left for her brother's school lunch tomorrow and reminded her that we had frozen pancakes so she had the pancakes instead :)

  • Youngest Son and I chatted a bit when he got home from school. Even though he's not going to enter a video in the Teen Video Challenge, he still wants to attend this afternoon's "Teen Scene" session at the library so I'll have him practice driving to get there and back again, as we do every Wednesday.

  • The kittens needed their claws clipped pretty badly. Princess, in particular, has started trying to do her claws on Greg's chair and the window screens, despite the many actual cat scratchers we have throughout the house (3 cardboard scratchers, two sisal scratchers and three cat trees each with carpet or sisal poles for them to scratch!).  She's also the one kitten who absolutely hates being picked up or held against her will. She screams and struggles, and I don't know where this comes from since she's been handled from birth so it's not like it's anything new to her!  Arrgh. So today I got the nail clippers, grabbed her, held her firmly while she screamed and spat, told her "No!" in a forceful voice and then praised her in a quiet voice when she quieted down.  And kicked Youngest Son out of the living room because he was hovering and making everyone nervous (he's the self-assigned "protector" of cats from Evil Mom!).  Well, I ended up sitting on the carpet with her between my legs, and was able to clip both her front paws, while the other two kittens were trying to catch her tail, which was swishing around mightily.  I let her go without clipping the back claws because they are blunter and not to long.  Success!  After that I clipped the 2 male kittens front claws with a minimum of fuss (good boys!) and moved on to the older cats. Male Cat is the oldest and knows it's pointless to struggle (he's such a good cat) so he let me clip all 4 paws, and boy, he needed it badly. Probably why he didn't try to struggle at all.  Mean Kitty is mostly afraid of me so the difficulty is trying to extricate one of her paws from that ball of fur and fat since she tucks them under her, but praising her calmly worked and she let me clip her front claws (the back were fine) while only trying to escape once. Big improvement. She just moves too slowly as she is older now!  New Kitty had learned from her elders and let me clip her front claws without any problems or trying to run away, although she didn't want me to clip her back claws but they didn't need to be anyway. So a resounding success and a tasks that really needed to be done, off my or the kids' list (as I usually ask them to clip the cats' claws and pay them for it).  Hopefully Princess will be calmer next time. She lied down next to me and tried to play with Explorer's tail as I was clipping his nails, so obviously she wasn't traumatized too badly :)

  • I earned the daily Microsoft Rewards credits and input my weight into Walgreens' Balance Rewards for Healthy Choices and earned another 20 BR points.

  • I checked the 2 furnaces' air filters. The one in the kitchen needed to be replaced so I did that, but the other one is fine to go another month. That's a little savings!

  • I put one of the new loaves of chocolate chip pumpkin bread out for snacks. It's definitely drier than the ones I had made with AP (I made these with whole wheat flour since I had run out of AP flour) but you can't taste the extra ginger, phew.  I froze the other two loaves. Since they're drier, they crumbled more when I coaxed them out of the pans so I had to freeze a bunch of "crumbs" with them or I'd have to throw away a bunch of pumpkin bread. Na-uh.

  • I realized that I can't make pie crust without AP flour so I'm changing my dinner plans again!  I'll make tuna patties and serve the veggies as as side.

  • I had Youngest Son practice his driving by driving to the library and then letting him drive home when it was time to pick him up. I had said we'd go home "the long way" so he could get more practice, but he's still too unsure of himself behind the wheel and there was more traffic due to all the people coming home from work, plus it looked like it might rain, so we just came straight home.  It looks like I'll have to be the one teaching him on the stick shift as Greg isn't making any effort to get started. Grrr. Maybe Friday afternoon if my daughter doesn't go to her dad's...

  • I composed a letter to my great aunt in Powerpoint and inserted several pictures too. I printed it in color and mailed the letter right away.

  • Youngest Son has shown interest in "Law & Order" as he's been lingering longer and longer in the living room... he just brought his homework with him and settled himself on the other couch. Yes!  A convert!  Greg hates "Law & Order" and its various incarnations. It'd be nice to share something with Youngest Son.

  • None

  • I registered to receive a free bag of Stacy's Chips

  • Fed the kittens
  • Packed Greg's lunch
  • Prepped his breakfast
  • Worked on my shopping list
  • Drove my son to school
  • Aired out the house
  • Broke down the cardboard boxes from the front porch
  • Took them down to the curb for collection
  • Texted my 2 friends to wish them a Happy International Women's Day
  • Sent 2nd email to director of educational foundation
  • Firmed up my coffee date with BFF on Friday
  • Firmed up my breakfast/hike date with Pixel Peeper in April
  • Generally vegged out!
  • Read a new-to-me blog and commented
  • Chatted with Daughter
  • Chatted with Youngest Son when he came home from school
  • Clipped the cats' nails
  • Worked on my Rewards programs
  • Checked the air filters and replaced one
  • Froze two loaves of pumpkin bread
  • Printed the 1095 form and put it in our tax folder for 2016
  • Had Youngest Son drive us to the library
  • Brought the empty recycling bins back up the driveway
  • Washed all 4 litter boxes
  • Scheduled a credit card payment
  • Wrote a letter to my great aunt
  • Went to pick up Youngest Son from the library
  • Mailed the letter to my great aunt

  • Despite the inequality we still face, I'm thankful to be a woman in the 21st century instead of in the time "when America was great."
  • I'm grateful that I get to stay home and take care of my family, after having been a part of the workforce for 15+ years.
  • I'm grateful to be a citizen because it means that I will be able to exercise my right to vote in every single election unless that right is taken away from me too.
  • I'm grateful that my Daughter is a strong, intelligent, artistic, hard-working, determined, and lovely woman who knows what she is about and what she is capable of.


  • At about 9 a.m. I was sad to realize that the cardinals hadn't come to visit the feeder (they came at about 8 a.m. yesterday) and right on cue, the male showed up with a juvenile (I think?) and another bird came along too!  At the same time, the black and white stray cat who's been making appearances walked into my yard from under the fence and was headed to the feeder, until he realized that I was still sitting on the patio so he turned around and left the birds alone.  Phew!

  • A bit later I spotted a pair of red bellied woodpeckers on the power pole, only one had flown away by the time I was able to snap pictures. I need to remember that the loud call I hear in the mornings is them!

  • I'm hearing mourning doves and a hawk but I can't see either :(

  • I love my new camera. I do need to be better at using it, but when I do it right, the quality of the photos is excellent.

I don't think I had ever noticed that the body of the butterfly is color coordinated to its wings. It's like it's wearing a dress!

Stray cat in our backyard

I think this might have been a juvenile male cardinal "getting his red on", as he looked mostly brown on the other profile side, but definitely turning red in this one!

And this other little bird showed up at the feeder at the same time as the's a house finch.

Red bellied woodpecker male (red crown extends down the nape of the neck)
Red bellied woodpecker female (grey cap, red nape)

It was all over the place today!

Here's the male again.

Lizard that had just eaten a bug and wanted me to take its picture :)

A bee visiting my green onion flower

Close-up on my rosemary from several feet away

The kittens trying to figure out how to remove the screen already!

Female Northern Cardinal

I swear, this lizard draped himself on a patio chair next to me and was flirting with me. "Hey baby, come here often?" I told Greg that via text and he said "That lizard clearly has no job if he's ogling women at 11 in the morning. That's not sexy." LOL.

As I was leaving to take my son to the library this afternoon, I spotted this little rascal on the bird bath. Only he wasn't there to take a bath! I had filled it with seeds and dried mealworms yesterday! He froze when he realized that I had seen him...

And then thought "Sigh. Ah, screw it, might as well eat now!"

And dove in!

Nuym, nyum, nuym!

Did you celebrate International Women's Day today?


  1. Your photographs are gorgeous! Especially loved the butterfly ones. 🦋

    1. This camera takes excellent pictures when I know what I'm doing! That butterfly was gorgeous and so nice to sit still for a second so I could snap the pictures. There's a yellow Sulfur one that keeps coming to visit but that one has ADHD or something and I can rarely snap it. Since I'm not going to garden, I should go buy more potted flowers so I can attract more butterflies and hummingbirds!

  2. Happy International Women's Day to you, too! Glad you decided to observe it by not going shopping. :)

    Your photos are so nice! Love the ones of the butterfly, and the squirrel, of course! Too funny about the flirting lizard! But yeah, he's definitely giving you the eye! :D

    Hope you have a fine day, tomorrow.

    1. Same to you as I saw you didn't go shopping either. And I agree with your observation that I don't know if that accomplished anything since we're going shopping today and I don't know that it was as widely observed as the organizers had hoped.

      But now I have to go shopping today and I really don't feel like it... I hope you warm up today, Bless!

  3. No I didn't but daughter and I talked about it last week. She really wanted to take the day off but couldn't and ditto with me! We've both written and made lots of telephone calls for 'the cause.' I'm just trying to stay optimistic. I always have enjoyed politics. I'm sitting here eating some cereal because I'm hungry. I limit my coffee but always have one cup when I wake up. This morning I have an early appointment but not too much planned for the rest of the day. I stopped at WM yesterday to get a greeting card and bought some cabbage and made some cole slaw. I was getting sick of lettuce! Then I found 3 pieces of chocolate I had to eat haha. Oh well, I've been pretty good. GS wanted a shamrock shake after I told him about them and I didn't get one. He loved it- I just wasn't hungry and figure I still have a few days to still have one! My daughter in California sent me a cute video of my granddaughter- she's 2 1/2 and got her first professional haircut LOL. Not much else...almost Friday yay.

    1. When I looked in my fridge yesterday and saw the half head of cabbage left over from last week, I thought "I'm going to make coleslaw for lunches!" as I have a jar of Marie's cole slaw dressing that I had gotten for free. So great minds think alike! I also make a really good Chinese Cabbage Salad but it's so not good for my diet between the oil and the sugar that go into the dressing. And the Ramen noodles. Good for you to have skipped the shake, you are doing so well! I don't care for shake or ice cream so it's never a problem for me to skip those but if you put a loaf of bread within 100 feet or me, it's gone.
      Did your little granddaughter enjoy her haircut? Enjoy your day today!

  4. It was nice to see you recognize International Women's Day. I didn't post yesterday because I was really busy with work (a strike wasn't really an option for me) although I did eventually make a post on my facebook page.

    Your breakfast looked great! And those photos of the butterfly are amazing.

    1. Thanks, Laura. This camera is something else, lol. I want to carry it with me all the time :)

      I'm torn about the strike. As I've said before, I don't think one-day strikes accomplish anything. But who can afford to strike at all these days?

  5. AP flour???

    I love all your photos...birds, squirrels, butterflies...just fantastic!

    1. All-Purpose flour, sorry :)

      Thanks, I'm glad you enjoyed the pictures! I texted Middle Son today that I was ready for new hands-on photography lessons and that I was willing to pay him so we'll make an appointment after Spring Break :)


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