Sunday, April 9, 2017

Going on a New Adventure ~ Sunday 4/9/17

I did it!  I slept until 10 a.m. this morning and only got up because I heard Greg head downstairs himself.  The poor guy had a terrible headache all night and tried to sleep in this lounge chair for most of the night, to no avail apparently because he headed back to bed at 11:30 a.m. declaring himself in a foul mood and needing a nap :(

I had some cuddle time with the kittens throughout the night myself, but they weren't too bothersome and I was really out, I guess. Also my wonderful new mattress cured my backache again, yay!

No To Do List posted again for today, although I keep on sending myself emails with "to do's" to add to my list tomorrow :) But today again, I'm going to be lazy.

  • Lots of good sleep for me last night. Not so much for Greg. Our son woke up late too, although he did get up early to feed the oldest cats.  Greg fed the kittens as he got up a little earlier than me.

  • Another day in the 70s today is ahead of us, although it'll be a little warmer than yesterday, so I opened the windows as soon as I got up and the kittens are enjoying the sights and sounds.

  • And then they got bored with those and started playing with their toys!  The boys were batting the ball in the "chasing" toy back and forth for a while and, of course, as soon as I started filming them, Princess crashed the party and distracted them. I was going to post a video but the file was too large and I don't feel like fiddling with it.

  • I stretched the 1/2 gallon of milk by adding water to it.

  • I ate one of the fortune cookies leftover from last night's dinner and found the fortune that I posted as a header inside. Serendipitous?  I want to go kayaking today at some point...

  • No automatic videos for Swagbucks again today means that I'm not messing with it at all. I earned 2 SB for the daily poll and the deal of the day and another 6 SB for a Search Award and I'm leaving it at that.

  • I reused a plastic  bag that came with my free plant from the festival yesterday to gather and dispose of the contents of the upstairs litter box.  Side note: I had brought a reusable shopping bag with me but I accepted a plastic bag since I didn't want loose wet soil messing up my new wooden signs!  I used to eschew as much plastic as I could but I don't mind it as much now since I reuse them for the litter box cleaning duty. However, I did tell the sign guy that I didn't need one since I had brought my own bag. So I feel a little virtuous...

  • After Greg headed back to bed, I decided to come sit outside on the patio, where I am presently.  It's sunny since it's about noon so I decided to install my new patio umbrella stand.  I pulled the broken plastic one away, thinking I should keep it as a back-up, just in case... and then I opened the box of my new one from Aldi. Guess what?  It was broken in half!!! I thought it was made of heavy metal but it's made of cast cement or something and they must have pilled a whole bunch of them on top of one another. There was no way for me to see that it was broken or not before I bought it. Grrr. Now I have to lug it all the way back to Aldi and I won't be getting another one. I'll have to spring for a more expensive one at Target or a garden center. So for now, the broken plastic one is back in play...

  • I also deadheaded a rose, refilled the hummingbird feeders, applied more Vaseline to their hooks because the ants were inquiring, refilled the bird bath with rainwater.

  • And watered a volunteer basil plant that had started to grow. Yay!  I love volunteer plants! I shook the dried basil seeds all over that bin so hopefully I'll have a lot more basil sprouting soon... if I remember to add water to the bin.

  • Then I did some research on where to plant my Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow plant. It's a tropical plant from Brazil so the good news is that it loves the heat.  Sunset Magazine says you can plant it in the shade so I think I'll plant it in the mulch near Greg's shed, where I had my roselle plant a couple of years ago. We'll see how it does there.  I'll have to remember to water it!
Mine isn't blooming so I'm borrowing this from an online article.
  • Yesterday, at one of the stores inside the Plant St Market, I saw a unisex T-shirt that featured an outline of the state of Florida and stated "My Happy Place". I would have loved it if it had been in a V-neck ladies' style, but they only had the unisex style. I went online this morning to see if I could find what I wanted. The company that sells them gives back 10% of the orders to research against muscular dystrophy, but they only sell the unisex version. They do offer one design with Florida that just says "home" in the style that I want. So I emailed them to find out if there would be any chance of ordering the version that I wanted. We'll see what they say.  Florida is indeed my happy place. I love living here.
From: The Home T
  • As we were dreaming about living in Oakland, yesterday, I suggested we could keep our current home as our weekend home, and Greg said "Yes, and we could call it our "Lake House" since it sits between 2 small lakes. Mind you, Oakland is only 20 minutes away so it wouldn't be such a trek to come spend the weekends here, lol. 

  • I saw a post on Slickdeals that shared an official Facebook announcement that Wawa will be offering any size free coffee all day on April 13 (so Thursday) so I texted it to my BFF and made a note in my calendar, in case I end up going shopping on Thursday.  Then I saw the same announcement on Twitter.

  • However, I'm thinking that I might head in to Clermont tomorrow so I can return the umbrella stand at Aldi and the cream and anti-allergy pills at CVS and get my money back.  I'm afraid that if I wait until Wednesday, Aldi might claim that I broke the stand?!  I'm not 100% sure about their customer service on those things, although I did get several refunds before.

  • I researched umbrella stands at Lowe's and spotted this one. It's $20 more expensive but made of granite and 40 lbs. I need to measure under my table to make sure it would fit in-between the feet and I might pick one up at some point...

  • For lunch, I had the leftovers from my Chinese food order from last night (we all have leftovers so I think we're all having those for lunch) and I also the leftover cheesy grits from Friday night, along with 2 clementines.

  • Youngest Son walked to the park.  I'm trying to resist the temptation of driving to Lowe's to buy butterfly plants for my berm...  

  • I uploaded new store coupons to my CVS app and digital manufacturer coupons to my Publix digital wallet as well as Publix store coupons! That was new...

  • I also printed very few coupons via Swagbucks, most of them being pet coupons that I'll donate to the SLAL Thrift Store.

  • Greg got up at about 2 p.m. He still looks cranky...

  • I started working on my Shopping List for the upcoming week, although I haven't made a menu yet. I perused the Walgreens and CVS ads and added to my list from there.  I also printed some CVS coupons from their website.  CVS is offering a 14-ct pack of Orbit gum for $1.00 and you receive a $1.00 ECB in exchange, good on your next shopping trip. I chew gum and I use the ECB to reduce my grocery expenses so I'll be getting this! Also the 2 bottles of Propel Water will be $2.00 and I'll get $2.00 back in ECBs.

  • I earned the maximum of Microsoft Rewards credits, hoorah!

  • I went to ask Youngest Son if he still wanted to go kayaking and he did so he went to change, Greg showed us how to load the 2 kayaks in his truck, and off we went to the lake near our house. The boat launch is just 1/4 mile away.  I didn't want to risk taking my phone or even my older camera along so I didn't get any pictures. It was a little harder than it had been when I kayaked in the past... because I guess in the past I might have used canoes instead, lol.  I was a little wobbly and it was hard for me to go in a straight line, or even follow the shore l ine. I had read some comments about this specific kayak from people complaining about the same thing. Youngest Son didn't seem to have a problem at all, he's really a natural.  I'm thinking that maybe my significant heavier weight is contributing to the wobbliness and not being able to paddle in a straight line so well, yet another incentive to lose weight, right?  I didn't think to bring my "fitbit" along so I could use it as a watch.  In the end we only stayed on the water for 20 minutes, but that was fine since it's not like we drove a long way to get there!  Youngest Son was in a contemplative mood so he didn't really say anything.

  • On the way home, I offered to go to McDonald's to get some shakes so he perked up. We had to go home first to get my wallet since I had only brought my driver's license with me, and also ask Greg if he wanted anything. He didn't.   But he did say he wanted to go kayaking on his own later on on the Palatlakaha River (there's a boat lunch a couple miles away from our house) so we only unloaded one kayak and left the other in his truck.

  • While we were gone, he sprayed some bleach on the house to get rid of mildew. I had told him to make sure not to spray the kittens as they watched him from behind the screens, so he closed some windows... and then sprayed bleach on the windows so now I have a whole bunch of windows to clean and I'm NOT a happy camper at all.  Then around the living room windows I saw him starting spraying the bleach without closing the windows first... but we have drapes on those windows so I ran back inside the house to close those windows so he wouldn't spray bleach on my drapes!  By then, I was the one who was very cranky!

  • Youngest Son and I drove to McDonald's. I had a coupon for any size iced coffee for $1.49 so I got that for myself (fewer calories) and he got an Oreo McFlurry. My OOP was a little over $4.00 and I paid with Amazon Visa for 2% back in Rewards. Also, I think it might qualify for as a McCafĂ© purchase, which then would allow me to get a free drink at my next visit?  We'll see. Update: I restarted my app and no, it doesn't look like it'll count. Well, darn it. Next time...

  • Back home, I went to make peace with Greg and offered him a sip of my iced coffee, and then realized that back over an hour before, when I went to ask Youngest Son if he wanted to go kayaking, I had left my laptop and my good camera outside.  Back then they were in the shade of the umbrella, but by the time I realized they were still outside, the laptop was in full sun!  Oh no!  I was pretty upset with myself. The laptop was burning hot. Thankfully the camera was still in the shade. I brought the laptop back inside and it wouldn't turn on :(  Since I needed to change out of my wet clothes (I guess I'm a messy kayaker!), I brought the laptop upstairs with me, turned on my pedestal fan and let it blow on the open laptop to try to cool it down faster.  I went online on my phone to see if I could find more wisdom on there and the stories I found were encouraging... and 5 minutes later I tried turning it back on and it turned on just fine. It had shut itself down completely as a safety precaution, which was nice.  Phew!  I still can't believe I did that as my laptop is really something that I value a lot.  What an airhead!

  • Greg put together our new garden utility cart. It ran haul 500 lbs!  Darn it, we should have brought it along on the trail yesterday, Greg could have pulled me back to the truck!
The new cart and the old toddler wagon it replaces.  That wagon has some serious mileage on it. There's nothing wrong with it but the front axle that's kind of bent. It moved my apartment, numerous bags of garden dirt, cement blocks... I got it when my daughter was an infant and she's 18 and a half now!
  • Oooh, Petco Pals Rewards alerted me that I finally qualified for the $5 back in Rewards!  So I loaded it to my card.  Remember when I bought the cat toys on Friday?  That evening, I had gotten a promotional email from Petco touting their "double points on all Leaps and Bounds Cat Toys" but then saying that you had to upload the offer to your wallet prior to a purchase to earn the points. Well, I didn't know about it (I very rarely shop at Petco so I don't monitor their offers very closely) but I had bought the toys that same day so I uploaded the offer to my account anyway, hoping that maybe their computers would credit me double points anyway since the date of the upload and the date of the purchase were the same... my gamble worked!  I did receive double points, woohoo. Plus, I guess I'm already only $29 away from my next reward, which actually doesn't sound right but I'm not going to argue.  So next time I get a coupon for a free bag of cat treats, I'll buy another cat toys with my credit :)

  • SavingStar added 12 new rebates to their app so I unlocked some of them.

  • I felt like reading and my library book is due in  2 days, so I renewed it online just in case... while I was logged in, I also put on hold "Prague Winter" by Madeleine Albright, which had been recommended by Bless.  

  • Earlier today and yesterday, my men had finished 2 boxes of cereal and kept them for me, so I clipped the BoxTops for Education labels and set them aside to mail to our former elementary school in the Fall, and saved the inner cereal bags to reuse as freezer bags.

  • Greg paddled about 1.5 mile each way and came home.. invigorated?!  He got gas for the truck at RaceTrac so now I have yet another receipt with which to get a freebie. He charged the gas to Amex for 2% back in Rewards and earned loyalty points on his RaceTrac app.

  • I got dinner started late and it was supposed to be cooked on the grill (which I hadn't cleaned) for 45 minutes. Oops!  So I ended up making regular burgers and a salad.

  • And I did the dishes after dinner, yay!

  • McDonald's: $4.47 (drink/snack for myself and son)
  • RaceTrac: $39.43 (to fill up Greg's truck)

  • A $5 Rewards from Petco

  • Commented on a blog
  • Deadheaded a rose
  • Tried switching out my patio umbrella stand :(
  • Refilled hummingbird feeders
  • Applied Vaseline to poles
  • Refilled bird bath
  • Refilled cardinal feeder
  • Observed nature in my garden
  • Printed and uploaded coupons
  • Worked on Microsoft Rewards
  • Took youngest son kayaking
  • Took youngest son to get a snack
  • Panicked because of my "dead" laptop!
  • Unlocked new rebates
  • Renewed a library book and put another on hold

  • For a good night's sleep
  • For not falling off the kayak or getting stuck in the weeds :)


  • My new Garden Friends sign is working!  I have seen several bees and wasps coming to drink the hummingbird nectar, and butterflies are fluttering by.  I just need to see a ladybug now :)

  • I feared that by sitting outside at noon, I had already missed all the bird excitement, but the calls of the Cardinals started to sound shortly after and a male just landed at the feeder at 12:20 p.m.

  • And then the loose black and white cat, the one that isn't hurt, showed up in my backyard and the birds quieted and the one at the feeder flew off...

  • Even though they couldn't see it, two of the kittens started meowing at the window and scratching the screen with their claws.  I went to tell them to stop but they didn't look too chastised. Rascals!

  • My hibiscus is blooming like crazy!

  • And two of the four verbena pots have come back from the dead very nicely, I should water the other two. Well, I need to water ALL the potted plants. But right now I'm comfy.

  • I can smell whiffs of jasmine when the breeze is blowing and this time I know it's my Confederate Jasmine because I didn't spray any body spray on this morning :)  Oh it's so lovely. I love this time of year!

  • Well, darn it, I've been here for an hour and still haven't seen a hummingbird!

  • The squirrels have really been enjoying my bird seeds, I had to refill the cardinal feeder already!

  • A small Gulf Fritillary came to have lunch at the verbena pots and very obligingly turned around in various poses for me :)

  • Well it's now 1:36 p.m. and there is no action in the garden at all, save for the loose black and white cat chasing lizards, and the dragonfly patrolling the backyard. For such a beautiful day, it is a little disheartening. Time to go kayaking? I wonder where we should go... I guess the lake next door again (not that I've ever gone kayaking on it!).  

  • As I finished typing this, a Sulfur butterfly came to get his lunch, on the verbena, of course!  Good thing I watered it earlier this week!

  • At 2:04 p.m. my patience was finally rewarded!  A hummingbird showed up at the feeder close to me and that one got smart and decided to use the perch so it made for a nice series of pictures as it took its time to drink the nectar. Yay!

  • I saw turtles, an osprey, and a great egret while we were kayaking, but I didn't have a camera to take pictures. We should have brought that darn GoPro that Youngest Son rarely uses!
Well, now it's dinnertime so I need to go cook :(  I hope you all had a nice relaxing (or productive, if that's what floats your boat!) weekend.


  1. Back to the ole' routine here. Visit was nice EXCEPT Saturday afternoon when my brother and little sis got into it over...politics. Brother was quite rude although we all know how he is and little sis should have stopped. Brother and I are liberals and can hardly say the name DT and little sis voted for's going to take a lot to mend that relationship. My coconut cupcakes and rolls were good and I didn't overeat. Yesterday after church, we went to the outlet mall, sis bought a shirt and pants (broke but you know how that is LOL) and then I treated everyone to lunch. That's a plus with my working- I can still do things like that. It cost me $120 with tip but there were 8 of us so actually pretty cheap says Nan who was was just used to Disney prices. M y house is clean too although I threw a few things in drawers and now have to remember where they are or leave them until after daughter and family visit in May. Oh Sis took us to BJs Saturday and she priced kayaks! I was thinking about you- nephew wants one. They had 2- $300 and $500 each. I imagine it won't be long before she buys him one. He is spoiled rotten- 21 year old only child haha. Isn't this weather amazing?

    1. That's a tough one. I think people, in the past, were able to see past political differences because our elected officials weren't as polarizing. And no extremists were in power! I try not to discuss politics with my own brothers. I suspect they might be voting for Le Pen, that despicable Nazi-leaning Far Right French woman in the upcoming presidential election (she's somehow endearing herself to a lot of people, including a lot of young people who obviously haven't learned anything about France and the rise of extremism in Europe in the first part of the 20th century) and I'm sick to think about it. I'm more of a centrist, I guess. No political party ever reflects my views, not even close, so I'm not really sure where I fall. I think all politicians are crooked, anyway.

      "says Nan who was was just used to Disney prices" LOL. So true! Well, I think you did very well paying only $120 for eight people. Greg bought lunch for his daughter and son-in-law last weekend and the total bill was close to $100 for just 3 of them.

      I hope your nephew has fun kayaking! We didn't know anything about them when we looked at prices and couldn't believe how expensive they were! I feel we got a very good deal on ours, but now that Greg and I have used them, there are a couple of things that we wish they had, that we didn't know to look for. But we'll make do :) It's very nice to have the option to go on the water now, since we live in "Lake County", where there are a lot of lakes, etc. We don't have the room to store a boat and trailer (plus we didn't want the expense) so this is a nice substitute and we can have more choices to be active outdoors. Now if I could only convince Greg to get on a bike, lol.

      Have a great week, Nan!

  2. It looks like you had a really nice Sunday. I hope Greg's headache went away. We slept till 7:30 AM, watched CBS Sunday morning, watched film noir and then drove to my grandmothers to bring her a weeks worth of meals . I've now added cooking for my 98-year-old grandmother to my to do list each week. It will be a challenge because she doesn't live close. I'm not sure how I ended up doing this except that no one else in the family would. So after a full day of work on Saturday and then running errands with my husband I made beef stew , Baked chicken drumsticks with her choice of condiments, salmon and fresh green beans, meat loaf and several baked white and sweet potatoes. These were not huge portions that I cooked as they were just for her but we did put half of the food in her freezer at her request. Then we went for a nice Sunday drive before coming home to cook pasta for the Uncle and pops

    1. Are you trying to qualify for sainthood?! Goodness, Sandie, where do you find the time and energy? I guess they don't have Meals on Wheels in her area? Although I heard that funding for that is getting cut too... Maybe you can get in a routine to cook all your meals a week in advance and freeze them and just save her a portion of each dish so you're not cooking twice? There are some people who do once a month cooking where they spend a whole day cooking for the upcoming month and freeze everything. I don't think I could ever be that organized (and I don't want to cook for a whole day!) but sometimes I look at those posts wistfully! That reminds me that I need to make a menu for this week. I might cheat and just reuse one of my past menus... it's pretty much what I did last week.

      I'm glad you got time to relax a little, though. Yes, Greg's headache was gone yesterday but he was still having intestinal problems. He says he ate too much on Saturday so yesterday he didn't eat much at all and drank lots of water and this morning he felt fine, thanks for asking. Have a great week!

  3. No I'm not trying to become a saint. And normally I would in the future just save some for her and freeze it. She lives far away from all of us and she did have meals on wheels come visit once but was quite insulted that they went through all her cupboards and inspected the whole house. I try to explain to her that they do that because some seniors do not have family that brings them groceries and calls them every day. She's getting tired and cooking exhausts her. I did talk to my mom who herself is not well and losing her vision and my aunt who lives even further away has her own issues to deal with. She does bring my grandmother to doctors appointments and bring her groceries when she asks for things. It just seems like something we needed to do and my husband was supportive of it. When I brought her actually will last for two weeks and we divided it up and put it in the freezer. Just wanted to make sure she had variety to start and now moving forward I will just bring her extras that I cook for our meals.

    1. I hope I didn't offend you with my sainthood comment. I admire you very much for taking care of everyone like this, especially in light of your own health problems!

      I think I would also not like anyone go through my cupboards, even though I might understand why they do it. I'll be a very cranky old lady if I make it to that age.

      It's a shame she lives far away. Perhaps you and your husband can turn it into a field trip each time by visiting nearby points of interest? The drive might seem less daunting that way? It sounds like you already have a good plan in place to make sure you have prepared food to take to her. I'm sure she's very appreciative!

      I'm not sure how my great-aunt (she turns 90 this year) handles her cooking. I know she still bakes so I imagine she also cooks for herself. She does have an in-home aide who comes at least a week, but I think it's just for help with cleaning.

  4. I am late with my comments, but I am glad you had a good day and Greg's headache went away. Hope you have a good week ahead. "Lunchtime Bless"

    1. And I'm late replying to your comments so it evens out :) Thanks, Bless, for spending your lunchtime reading my blog!

  5. I'm glad you're enjoying the kayak. I should rent one before I even think of buying one - but kayaking sounds like the kind of sport I'd enjoy. No noise, not motor. Heh. I've wondered about bringing a camera along...maybe I should bring my oldest, cheapest camera, the one that I wouldn't cry over if it did end up getting wet and broken. ***IF*** I get a

    1. You should definitely rent one or two before you buy one, so you see what it is that you like or dislike about each type. There are many models on the market! We went for the cheapest ones that we could find that were still fishing kayaks but there are things that Greg and I should have known to look for before we bought them. I think it only costs something like $4 to rent one at one of the state parks that has them. Also, it's more tiring than it looks! And you need to be able to store it and carry it to the river/lake where you're going to use it. I still have only used mine once since we bought it. I might go with Greg tomorrow but I think I'll only bring my old camera, if I can find a cord to wear it around my neck :)


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