Monday, April 3, 2017

Domestic Monday ~ 4/3/17

Yesterday ended on the same note as it started: with me realizing that the kittens had destroyed something. This time, they had gone into my bedroom (I thought I had closed the door but they launch themselves at the doors and if the door isn't firmly closed, they can get it to open!) and dug out my earbuds from the cubby next to my bed (it's made of rattan so they easily can pull it open with their claws) and chewed on them until one of the ear buds was completely detached.  I was so mad, I screamed and kicked them out of my room and this time made sure the door was firmly closed and ignored Explorer's cries at about 1 a.m.  Then he cried again at about 5:00 a.m. and I had to use the bathroom anyway so I let him in and we made up. But I'm still mad about the earbuds. Ugh.  I need t buy myself a case for them like those I had given to Greg and Youngest Son for Christmas.

This morning I feel tired and sore and not motivated for Domestic Monday at all, so I don't promise to be very productive!

  • Do laundry DONE
  • Hang laundry to dry DONE
  • Fold laundry
  • Put laundry away
  • Clean bathroom sinks (both) and mirrors
  • Spray shower with bleach
  • Take a bath with library book I watched a show on my Kindle instead
  • Inventory fridge DONE
  • Make menu for the week DONE
  • Work on shopping list DONE
  • Clip newly printed coupons
  • Put them away in organizer
  • Declutter the printer stand
  • Refill the self watering bins
  • Give a driving lesson to my son with the stick shift
  • Take Youngest Son to get a haircut
  • Clean bathroom ceiling 
  • Clean hallway ceiling right outside the bathroom
  • Make my bed DONE
  • Earn Microsoft Rewards credits DONE
  • Input weight into WHBRHC 
  • Set 15 minute timer and try to accomplish as many chores as possible in that time
  • Do the dishes from this weekend DONE
  • Do the dishes by hand, drain/dry in the dishwasher (AFTER DINNER) 
  • Take one mattress and the bed to the thrift store?
  • 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 
  • Exercise at least 35 minutes on my bike  (weekdays only) 
  • Clean upstairs litter box  
  • Put away the clipped articles from Kiplinger's magazine 
  • Inventory the pantry
  • Inventory the freezers
  • Purge the top drawer of the file cabinet
  • Take RaceTrac surveys 
  • 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
  • Ask PEAR Park rangers about the trees from my backyard or look at the Audubon site that Pixel shared.
  • Go to airport to cash in my euros?!
  • Mend sliding door window screen - get cat resistant screening material?
  • Plant and water the tree
  • Water the pineapples
  • Add water to indoor pineapples - I think I might compost them.  I really don't want to plant them, after all, and I don't have anyone to give them to.
  • Track my and Greg's IRAs for the IRS
  • Download all February and March pictures from phone, Canon camera, and Panasonic camera to external drive
  • Reply to blog comments  DONE
  • Reply to emails
  • Purge the dresser in the upstairs hallway
  • Purge the top drawer of the file cabinet
  • File all the pending documents
  • Use brush on fridge coils
  • Purge plastic containers from kitchen cabinets DONE
  • Schedule maintenance appointment for my SUV
  • Mop kitchen DONE
  • Vacuum living room
  • Return library materials
  • Pick up any coupon inserts from library
  • Try making yogurt in yogurt maker
  • See if can mend Youngest Son former backpack straps
  • Enter receipts into my spreadsheets 
  • Make crepes for snacks or bake a cake DONE
  • Work on April goals DONE
  • Schedule Amex payment
  • Update Net Worth Report spreadsheet in progress (mortgage statement won't be ready until 4/7)
  • Read a library book 
  • Deadhead the roses DONE
  • Vacuum living room
  • Scrub the bathtub 
  • Contact IRL friends to schedule coffee/lunch this month
  • Order new earbuds DONE

  • Youngest Son packed a lunch to take to school.

  • I drank the last of the coffee that I had brewed yesterday afternoon, cold, before brewing myself a new pot.

  • I dumped the water from an unfinished glass into the cats' water bowl.

  • I had told Greg that he would need to buy lunch today as I didn't have any leftovers for him and I dislike making sandwiches in the morning (I don't know why, I really have an avulsion to this!). He looked disappointed (I think because he likes to walk at lunch time and didn't want to waste time standing in line at the cafeteria) so this morning I told myself that I would stop by Publix after the school drop-off and get him a pre-made sub there.  As I approached Publix, I thought better of it since we do have sandwich makings at home. So I ended up making him a sandwich when I got him and packing him the usual stuff too (pretzels sticks, string cheese, yogurt and a Diet Dr. Pepper).

  • My 1st Swagbucks goal is 60 SB today.  I did get a 22 SB Search Award right off the bat, and I'm playing automatic videos but once again they're slowing down my laptop a lot. Also, I forgot to let them run while I was dropping off my son at school.

  • I earned the daily Microsoft Rewards credits.

  • I opened the windows in the living room this morning but only for 1 hour as it had gotten warm and humid already at 8 a.m.

  • I did 1 "super" load of laundry on cold/cold.  Since it is humid and we have a chance of thunderstorms starting at noon, I probably will stuff everything in the dryer today.  If I'm motivated, I might try to set up my old laundry racks in the laundry room and at least dry the undies/socks and exercise clothes in there.

  • I was thinking about biking to the library but I'd have to do that mid-morning in order to beat the possible afternoon thunderstorms and right now I don't feel it!

  • Last night I mixed 1/4 gallon of water with 1/4 gallon of whole milk to stretch it and I used that in my cereal this morning.  

  • I have about 1/2 gallon of sour milk in the fridge so I think I might make a bunch of pancakes and freeze them.

  • Discover Deals is offering the $10 off $30 deal in select accounts again. Once again, we have the offer on both our cards. HOWEVER, I was unable to add them to my app, getting a "Pin code doesn't match" error message repeatedly. I checked Slickdeals and many people are reporting the same problem.  I'll wait until tomorrow and try it again.

  • My son's Guidance counselor replied to my email from this weekend and confirmed that she had approved his French I class in the FLVS system. So now we'll just have to wait to hear from FLVS about being assigned to a class and teacher.

  • Panera sent me an offer for a free Pick Two if I make 4 visits in April (was going to be 5 but told me they were crediting me with a "free visit".  I doubt I'll make it.  I like Panera a lot but it's quite expensive now. I remember when you could get a Pick Two for $7.99, not too long ago, but now each component is priced separately and it usually adds up to $11-$12!  Plus, when I checked my app, it still says that I need 5 visits to get the freebie :(

  • I ended up being able to hang up most of my laundry in the laundry room and put a few items in the dryer on the Auto Moisture Sensing setting (a jacket, Greg's Tshirts, a bath towel).

  • I inventoried my fridge and jotted down which proteins were in my freezer that I could use this week so I can start working on a menu for the week.

  • I crafted a menu for the week, woohoo!

  • My cycle strikes again and I've been starving all morning. Ugh. I had to make myself wait until 11 a.m. to have lunch!  I made myself a pretty large (ok, very large) cranberry almond chicken salad sandwich on a flat bread and also ate some of the coleslaw I had made on Saturday.

  • After I ate, I decided to bake a cake for after-school snacks.  I decided to make a cake I hadn't made in years but that the kids used to love: Mini Morsels Pound Cake.  I got to use my Kitchen Aid mini mixer, which once again provided me with the opportunity to gripe about how hard it is to pour ingredients into it, the small capacity and how it's ridiculous that there isn't a handle on the bowl. But it did the job and it was very quiet, which I appreciated.  I used 2 sticks of Imperial margarine instead of butter, used the wrappers to grease my bundt cake pan and instead of flouring the pan, I used granulated sugar to give it a little crunch on the outside.  I did bake it indoors because I wasn't sure if it was going to rain or not. It didn't.

Yum... yes, it would be better with butter, but it's definitely acceptable as it is...
  • Since the laundry room felt very humid because of the wet clothes drying in there, I moved the laundry racks to the kitchen, thinking that the kittens might leave them alone since I was planning on being in there myself, doing the dishes. But no, I turned my back for 5 minutes and soon all the socks were on the floor and I was tripping over kittens non-stop. I lost my temper and chased them with a fly swatter several times until they understood that I meant business.  After I was done cleaning the kitchen, I put the laundry racks back in the laundry room since the kittens would have just thrown everything on the ground again.

  • I did the dishes while watching a couple of episodes of "Forensic Files" on Netflix, which made the task way more interesting :)

  • I also went ahead and decluttered the 2 cabinets where I kept plastic containers and this time, I was ruthless since I mostly use glass Pyrex dishes now.  I put 2 items in a box to donate (a plastic water bottle and a Tupperware brand low profile container) but the rest were put in my recycling bin. Oh boy, I had a lot of Chinese take-out containers!  I'm glad those are out of my life now.


  • Then I swept and spot-mopped the kitchen. I feel much better about Domestic Monday now!  I swept part of the Cat Room but my daughter is sitting there studying and I wanted to vacuum so I'll have to do it on a day when she's attending her classes.

  • I wanted new earbuds to replace the ones that the kittens chewed, but then I remembered that I had seen "sleep headbands" that allow you to listen to music or whatnot while you're lying down and it doesn't hurt your ears the way earbuds do. So I found a pair on Amazon that was on sale for $10.99 and applied my Discover Rewards so my OOP was just $4.57. I decided to forego the offer for a digital credit if I waited a week to get them, as I fall asleep every night listening to Netflix shows on my Kindle.  I can't wait to try them!

  • I earned 25 KFR points when I entered bonus code WINNINGRECIPES4U and another 100 KFR when I entered bonus code SPRINGPOINTS4ALL into my Kellogg's Family Rewards account.

  • I checked my mortgage account to see if the new statement had been generated so I could update our Net Worth document, but it won't be ready until the 6th or 7th of the month so I'll have to wait until then to finalize it.

  • I checked my Swagbucks ledger since the automatic videos had stopped playing and I had met my 1st daily goal. Yay!

  • I should get on the recumbent bike since I didn't use my regular bike to go to the library, but I feel tired. Once my son is home from school (in a few minutes) and we've chatted about his day, I'm going to go soak in the bathtub with my library book. Maybe the hot water will melt some of my fat!

  • I checked MobiSave and found new offers to unlock.  Several of them are for "any" brand of items that I could stock up on so I adjusted my shopping list accordingly so I can take advantage of the small rebates. I hardly ever do this but since those are items that we will use anyway, I might as well take advantage of them.

  • I rearranged my shopping list so the stores would be listed in alphabetical order since they weren't and it was driving me nuts and making me waste time.  My shopping list is a spreadsheet that I keep on Google Drive so I always have it available to me via my phone.

  • My son said he had a lot of schoolwork to do so he won't be volunteering at the library tonight.  I guess I'll return my materials on Wednesday, when I run my errands unless I have the energy to bike there tomorrow morning.

  • But then I went to take a bath and while I was in the bathroom, he finished his work, and decided to walk to the park and go volunteer anyway, but I'll still have to return the items myself.

  • After my bath, I went into the garden and used 2 cat litter jugs full of rainwater to water my rose bushes and hibiscus. Then I inspected the rain barrel, saw that it had collected some water when it rained last night, and was able to fill 2 more jugs that I used to water my 4 verbenas, that are pretty much fried :(

  • I also refilled the bird bath and used my homemade nectar to refill 2 of the 3 hummingbird feeders.

  • Then I deadheaded the roses.
They're fried!

  • I was 3 days late publishing and replying to comments, yikes!  I apologize. I've been feeling a little lazy in that arena recently, I fear.

  • I'm glad I didn't rush into buying ink for my inkjet printer when I was at Staples back on Friday because I just looked at my supplies and I have almost 3 full sets of color ink cartridges and an XL cartridge of black ink in stock. And also a toner cartridge for my laser printer. So I may not need ink for close to a year, if we keep on printing as much as we've been printing!

  • I checked the mail and found a card to exchange for a free sandwich meal at Zaxby's!  I had completely forgotten about it.  It's the freebie they promise you when you sign up for their email club, only instead of emailing it to you right away, they mail it to you something like a month and a half later!  Still, better late than never so I guess I'll be treating myself sometime soon.

  • I also received the 30% off discount for Kohl's this time.  We'll see if they fix the problem with the Discover Deals. Other people have complained that even the actual Kohl's cash from the store show as "not valid" when they try to add their certificates in the app so it looks like it's an app problem.

  • I saved 3 envelopes from junk mail to reuse them when I bundle coupons for the thrift store or my BFF.

  • Greg is going to conduct a conference call with his mom, his sister, and his mom's financial advisor on his way home, at the request of his mom. I hope he remembers to concentrate on his driving and doesn't end up in an accident (says the woman who hit another car yesterday and wasn't even on her phone when she did that!).

  • Dinner tonight is cheeseburgers and corn on the cob. Easy peasy!  Ah crap.  The ground beef was all gray and smelled suspicious so I threw it away. That didn't leave me with many other options! In fact, the only one I could think of was chicken nuggets. Greg is going to be thrilled (not!). I'm serving them with the corn on the cob.

  • Greg and I watched some more episodes of "Seinfeld" after dinner.

  • I entered my weight into Walgreens' BRHC and earned another 20 BR points.

  • No Spend Day!
  • Chili's sent me an offer for a free dessert, valid through 4/6.

  • A coupon for a free sandwich meal from Zaxby's.

  • Fed the kittens
  • Prepped Greg's breakfast
  • Worked on my To Do List
  • Drove my son to school
  • Packed Greg a lunch
  • Aired out the living room
  • Replenished toilet paper in the bathrooms
  • Made my bed
  • Made Greg's bed
  • Did a load of laundry
  • Commented on blogs
  • Worked on Rewards programs
  • Finalized my April goals
  • Hanged most of the laundry
  • Put the rest in the dryer
  • Inventoried the fridge
  • Wrote a menu for the week
  • Caught up on the news and blogs
  • Baked a cake
  • Decluttered the plastic container cabinets in kitchen
  • Moved laundry racks to kitchen
  • Did the dishes
  • Spot mopped the kitchen
  • Moved laundry racks back to laundry room
  • Researched and ordered new earbuds
  • Rearranged my shopping list
  • Took a bath
  • Refilled the hummingbird feeders
  • Refilled the bird bath
  • Watered the roses, hibiscus and verbena
  • Got rid of the aphids on the hibiscus
  • Replied to blog comments
  • Cooked dinner

  • For air conditioning and being able to afford our electric bill. It's getting hot in Florida.
  • For the little bit of rain we got last night
  • Greg drove home safely!


Mid afternoon, I spotted some cardinals at the feeders. I was able to take pictures through the sliding door window pane that doesn't have a screen.

Then tonight at about 7:45 p.m. I spotted a tiny hummingbird at my feeders, but I didn't have my camera so I missed taking a picture. Poop!

What was the last cake you baked?


  1. Hi Nathalie! That pound cake looks so yummy! If I had a working oven, I just might make it. 😉I've been thinking about you playing D& you know about "Roll 20"? My youngest and his buddies have played for years but are now separated by many miles and only recently learned about this site. It has Skype so you can play in real time, etc. (other things that go waaay over my head, too). Loving your photos...those kittens sure are naughty...I mean rambunctious! 😊

    1. Hi Judy! I checked with Youngest Son and yes he does have a Roll 20 account but he says he's never done much with it because it looks complicated :)

      How do you live without a working oven?! No baked goods?! Arrrgh.

    2. I've had an "easy bake" for the last seven years. I have baked in it, it's just not so easy! Ha! 😁

  2. Oh, those naughty kittens! I can just visualize you chasing them with a fly swatter! Do you scold them in French? Evey now and then, I speak to Dancer in Sinhalese and he just looks at me like, "Lady, I don't know what you are saying, but as long as you give me that tuna you have in that spoon, I'll put up with it!" LOL. Well done with decluttering your containers! I'm accumulating quite a few of them, myself. Yummy looking cake you made. The last cake I made was a plain yellow cake from a boxed mix. It was OK, but I didn't much like the taste. Hope you have a good day, tomorrow. Take care.

    1. Next time, try adding a can of pie filling on top of the cake batter. I did it with peach pie filling and it was sooooo yummy!

      I'm laughing picturing Dancer looking at you while you're talking to him in Sinhalese! Nope, I don't speak French even to the cats or even to myself when I'm alone! I'm all English, all the time.

  3. That cake looks delis! I saved the recipe. Cannot wait to try it!

    1. Do use butter the first time you make it, it's heavenly!

  4. I remember when our cats were little, they destroyed so much. One of them in particular was a chewer and could slice through things just like her teeth were scissors. People usually think that puppies are the ones that chew up things. Cats can certainly give them a run for their money.

    1. No kidding... none of our other cats ever chewed through anything but then again they were "only" kittens (i.e. no siblings that came with them). I think mine egg each other on but also Tabby Kitten is particularly destructive. I always joke that he's probably part rat, part beaver, part cat.

  5. That is one hulking to-do list! I envy your productivity.

    Also, you're a saint for dealing with three kittens. I took in a puppy recently, and that quickly became a temporary arrangement as her regular puppy behaviors were the thing that pushed me past my stress threshold. I can't imagine taking care of animals and children AND working on so many personal goals. Kudos to you.

    1. You're very kind. I'm not all that productive, my To Do list being more of a "wishlist" :) In reality, I'm quite lazy, which is why cats suit me just fine. They're much less work than dogs!

  6. Your cake looks so delicious! I made a banana cake recently (well, maybe almost a year ago) that had chocolate chips in it. Lately, I've been making the semolina ricotta cheesecake. I might be addicted to it...

    1. I've seen a picture of your cheesecake and you've mentioned it several times so I really want the recipe now. Or better yet, for you to make it for me!


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