Tuesday, July 25, 2017

A Day of Doing Nothing... and A Small Windfall ~ Tuesday 7/25/17

My thoughts are all over the place this morning because I just read Bless's post from yesterday about her doctor's appointment and now I have worrying to do (because I do that so well, I thought I'd take that on for her, you got to play to your strengths). And so something's gotta give so I guess I'll pass on doing the dishes again today.  Sorry for the poor attempt at humor.  Bless needs positivity so let's talk about my kitties.

Oh wait, that's not going to start with a positive story.  Right after I published my "Successful Day" post last night, I heard a crash and spotted Explorer on the breezeway countertop, not knowing what to do... he had jumped on there, tried playing or eating the zig zag plant (which is kind of toxic apparently) and make it fall, bud vase and all so I had water and glass all over the countertop.  Arrgh.  So I yelled and ranted and chased him until I caught him and then brought him back to the scene of the crime and he got my palm on his squirmy butt. And then I yelled more and told him to go hide and he wouldn't (of course he started purring when I picked him up from his hiding place the first time!) so I kept yelling at him to go hide and all the kittens were wondering "WTF?!" because they've really never experienced my wrath before. The older cats, the ones who behave properly, are used to it so they barely batted an eye. This is how they became well behaved, after all.  Yes, cats can learn and still love you, lol.  So anyhoo, then I didn't see any of the kittens for quite a while.  Then I used a heavier vase to put the zig zag plant in and set it outside on the patio table. I'll have to remember to check on it and I hope it'll root there.

I put on "Psych" and, while it's amusing at times, it's also so clownish that I quickly lost interest and just had it on for background noise. Not sure if I'll get Season 2. It's inoffensive noise to have on when Law & Order marathons aren't on (well, like today for instance!) but probably never going to become a favorite TV Show. Too bad because there are something like 180 episodes. Oh well. There's always Frasier and That 70's Show and King of Queens and Community (but not the last couple of seasons) and I own them all on DVD if I can't stream them.

Greg called and we chatted about what they did yesterday.  He somehow hurt his back and has been in pain for a couple of days. His mother's house must be cursed, first her and now him!  It seems that it's a muscle pain, though, as some topical ointment that she gave him seemed to relieve him somewhat.  I hope he'll be OK driving all the way back to Florida. I suggested they stay in Holiday Inn Express hotels along the way since their beds are soooo comfortable, but he's bent on camping (insert eyeroll here) so we'll see.  I suppose that if he really was in pain Youngest Son could legally drive since he has his permit, but I don't want my 15 year-old driving hundreds of miles on interstates, you know?  Although he would certainly get some driving experience that way!  I haven't talked to Greg yet this morning as he was going to the Memorial Park to visit his dad's "grave" before they headed on their way back, and I don't want to disturb that.

I am happy to report that all the "bad" snacks for me are out of the house, I've been sooooo good with decluttering this past weekend. *smirk*.  Oh yes last night I found that "share size" pack of M&Ms that my daughter had given me at some point and I ate it all. So now it's gone and I don't have to be teased about it anymore and trying to resist eating it. G-O-N-E. What a relief!  Explorer came out of hiding and came to snuggle against my tummy so of course my heart melted and we cuddled and I told him he'd better be a good boy from now on.

I think I fell asleep on the couch at some point?  Isn't it sad that it's not even 12 hours later and I don't remember?  Anyhoo, I went to bed at midnight and put on "Forensic Files" and, before I fell asleep, Explorer had settled himself on "his" pillow next to me and was watching the show with me, and Princess had jumped on the bed and was settling by my feet, so I turned off the Kindle and we went to sleep. At some point in the night, Tabby Kitty came too!  He almost never sleeps with me so I was thrilled... and annoyed because 3 almost-fully-grown cats on a full-size bed don't leave much room for an overweight middle aged woman who tends to move around a lot at night!  I sleep on my side with my legs drawn up as high as I can and of course Tabby Kitty nestled himself in the crook of my thighs so then I couldn't straighten out my legs at all (without kicking Princess who was sleeping catty corner by my feet). So it wasn't really comfy but hey, I was in cat heaven.  When I woke up at 8 a.m. all three cats were dead asleep so I cuddled them (and they didn't wake up) and marveled at how much I love those three little munchkins :)  Then I checked my emails and the news on my phone so I wouldn't disturb them by getting up, LOL.  We finally all got up at 9 a.m.

I have no plans for today. I don't think?  Something's nagging at me like I actually have something to do that I've forgotten (yeah, the dishes, only I didn't forget about them, I'm just ignoring them!) but I checked my calendar and there's nothing on there so...

I fed all the cats, petted the older cats to greet them, heated up a mug of the hazelnut flavored coffee from RaceTrac in the microwave (so bitter!) and turned on Pandora. I created a new channel based on "The Paper Kites", a band that my daughter and I listened to on Spotify during our trip. So far the other artists playing on the channel have been OK.  It reminds me of driving on the Blue Ridge Parkway with my daughter this past month and now I'm all nostalgic and tearing up. I've been tearing up a lot this morning already. Yep, my period is due next week and I always turn into a blubbering mess the week before. It's so annoying.

I'm running some SB videos this morning. My first daily goal is 40 SB and I was just granted an 11 SB Search Award so it'll be a little easier to reach it.

Windows 10 just had a notification that I could adjust the way some "apps" run so they don't drain as much battery power so I checked the apps they were talking about and, sure enough, Cortana and Skype (both Microsoft programs) were listed as running in the background even though I had taken great pains to disabled both of them when I first got the laptop and I'm pretty sure also once the laptop updated itself to the Creator Update.  Arrgh. I really hate Microsoft.  They're evil and I can't escape them, like most people.  They're really sons of bitches, going against their users' wishes because they just want to impose their will on you.  I don't use Cortana nor Skype and can't even uninstall them from the laptops.  Isn't something suing them for this like they were sued when they were trying to force everyone to use Internet Explorer? Argh, argh, argh. And Apple is just as bad so switching to Mac wouldn't really be better in my view. And I'm not learning Linux.  So I'll keep on whining about Microsoft. Maybe my daughter will one day became their CEO (ha, fat chance that a woman will ever lead that company!) and bring me on board as a consultant. And then, I promise, my friends, that we will all be given the chance to go back to Windows 7 and that NOTHING WILL EVER CHANGE.  LOL.

Well, the sky is getting darkish again. It's 10 a.m.  The street sweeper just drove down the road.  I need to go cook my breakfast (omelet this morning, woohoo!) and refill my mug of coffee. That's going to disturb New Kitty who is getting increasingly needy and has already settled herself on the couch next to me because she misses Youngest Son so much. She's very cute but I like my pets to be much less needy so I've been training her to just lay next to me without constantly pushing against me and my laptop.  Oh wait I just pet her head so now she's inviting me to scratch her belly, brb.

So I made myself a huge omelet, not because I was particularly hungry, but because the half zucchini that I had sliced early last week has become a little slimy. Then I also added the slimy but not too slimy spinach from the  bag that was almost used up (and threw away the rest).  Silly me realized that my hopes that the spinach I had defrosted would somehow keep its normal appearance upon defrosting were dashed!  The whole mass of spinach looks like it's been cooked down so I'll need to actually cook it sooner than later, probably for dinner. I might make creamed spinach since I love it so.

I earned the MS Rewards points for the day and then I called Greg. His back is still hurting and he now thinks that it's a pinched nerve. Great.  They're driving to KY today.  He asked what I was going to do today and I confessed that I was going to continue enjoying a day of not doing much and not having to feel guilty about not doing much. He laughed and said he'd work on making me feel guilty when he got home.  Bring.It.On!

My daughter was up so she came to chat for a while, and, like Greg, she asked me how long I managed to stay mad at Explorer last night, LOL. They know that I have a very very soft spot when it comes to Explorer, darn it.  She left to go run errands with her BFF at a shopping center about 25 minutes away from here and today she's driving. I asked her to take my Sodapalooza cups with her and get me refills on her way home so now I don't have to go anywhere, yay!

I just checked Swagbucks and I've met my 1st daily goal :)

I just got an alert that one of our credit cards was used at Walgreens, which means that Greg did stop to get some ThermaCare or other such remedy to apply to his back. The man must really be in pain as he does not like to use anything, usually.

I activated the SavingStar Healthy Offer of the Week since it's for a flat $0.25 off loose corn. There is a slight chance that I'll shop at Walmart or Publix this week and corn has been pretty cheap lately, so maybe I can get 1 ear for free or close to free?  We'll see.

My daughter needed some of those socks that are really liners to wear with her fake "Keds" that I bought her at Target last week and she called me to say she had found some at $10 for 6 packs. I guess that's good. She's charging it to my Discover. She is also planning on going to the Victoria's Secret store at that particular shopping center and redeem the coupon that I had received for a free pair of panties (no purchase necessary). She wasn't sure if that store would accept the coupon since I guess there was a restriction so I told her to go ask the cashier if they would honor the coupon before she even looked for a pair $12.50 or less (seriously, people spend $12.50 OR MORE on a pair of skimpy underwear that was probably made by child slave labor for $0.25?!?).  It always amazes me how someone so confident in so many areas can be totally unsure of herself when it comes to dealing with other people, lol. But I guess that's how you learn, right?  By putting yourself in those situation and figuring out the best way to go about doing things. And sometimes it's asking your mom what you should do :)

I did nothing this afternoon but read some blog posts while listening to Pandora.  Tabby Kitten approached the futon to try and sneak a bite of the papaya I had just finished eating (I still had the peel right there) so I took advantage of that to grab him and love on him and I guess he's getting used to that now as he didn't really struggle so I kissed him and told him love words for 10 seconds or so before he wanted to go. Well, Princess was sleeping across the living room on the window bench and when she heard me sweet talking another cat, she lifted her head and stared and tried to get my attention by chirping... after Tabby Kitten had left, she pretended to take her time to stretch and scratch and then kept on chirping while approaching me and it didn't take any coaxing at all for her to jump on the couch and get her cuddles, settle on the pillows near me (I arrange them so she's the comfiest possible!), start gnawing on my knuckles, and fall asleep!


Wait, she's cuddling with another kitten?!

This cannot be! The nerve of that woman!

Alright, I've got to go teach her a lesson.  OK, here I go.. wait, gotta crack my back first.

I mean, can you believe the nerve?  grumble, grumble...

When I get there, she's gonna get it!

See? I'm making biscuits on her boobs with my claws!  I'll show her what's what!

OK, fine, you can scratch behind my ears.

Oh, splurp, I feel very sleepy all of a sudden! *gnaw*

I think I showed her!  Zzzzzzz....

A while later, my daughter came home so that woke her up.  My daughter brought me back 2 Sodapalooza refills and showed me her acquisitions (socks and free undies from Victoria's Secret).  The Victoria's Secret bag is so cute and she was just going to throw it away so I kept it in my gift bag stash and warned her that she might find something un-Victoria's Secret-related under the Christmas tree packaged in this bag this year :)

And then she pointed out that some kitten (most likely Explorer) had chewed on my pineapple!  Grrr.

She wasn't able to gas up the Focus in Clermont (where gas is cheaper) so it was decided that I will take the Focus to go shopping tomorrow and gas it up at Wawa, where I'll be able to earn a free drink or coffee coupon with the survey from my receipt. Sodapalooza is ending on 7/31 so being able to get drink freebies with surveys is once again going to be much appreciated :)

I saw a couple of butterflies outside so I grabbed my camera and went outside to take pictures. So, let's back up a moment. Back when I got my camera in February, Middle Son gave me a hands-on photography lesson. It was great since it was 100% focused on the type of pictures that I wanted to take, not what the teacher thought I should be taking.  So I had understood his instructions and was excited to start taking better pictures.  And then, probably a couple of weeks after that lesson, I forgot something kind of important but I never realized it. So I went on to take pictures, but little by little I started to get frustrated at how my pictures would often not turn out as good on my laptop as they did on the camera's smaller screen when I was in the field. At first, I thought it was just due to me being a crappy photographer, and then I started blaming the camera, thinking that perhaps it wasn't as good as I had first thought.  So, forward to a couple of nights ago when I was bored and re-reading my own posts, and came across the post written the day of the lesson and in the days afterwards, that mentioned that I loved that my camera had a macro mode so I could take close up pictures that were crisp.  And I started thinking "macro mode?!" like it was the first time I ever heard of it.  Seriously, sometimes I really wonder if I'm not becoming senile.  Anyhoo, another post suddenly clarified everything. You see, my camera has a P mode, which I did remember to use for close-up pictures of flowers, as per Middle Son's instructions. However, I had completely forgotten that he had told me to then switch the focus wheel selection from AFS/AFF (fully automatic focus, I believe) to MF (manual focus) and then use the little scrolling wheel on the left side of the lens to then focus on the flower that I was trying to photograph manually. Oh my, what a difference!  You'd think automatic everything would be the best of the best but nooooooo.... So today I texted him with my admission of being a dunderhead (he's at work, I think, so hasn't replied yet!) but I did remember the instructions (and yesterday too!) and so I practiced a lot in the backyard with various weeds.  Hooray, my pictures might start being half good again :)

My papaya seedlings are looking good!

Surprise basil plant in my mostly dead verbena pot!

The Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow plant doesn't look great....

The "grass" really needs to get mowed!
I texted those pictures of the cats that I posted yesterday to Youngest Son as I realized it'd been a few days since I had sent him any.

Well look at that!  I've exceeded my 2nd SB daily goal today, and it's only 4 p.m. Yay!

Suddenly I remembered that I had meant to roast the chicken breasts that I had defrosted, today!  So I rubbed "Ten Things Farm" Chicken Seasoning (home mixed!) on them, in between the skin and the meat, and put them in the oven to cook. I don't preheat the oven since they'll be in there for 1 hour at least (they're huge!) so the oven has time to get to 375F and stay there for a while.

In the mail today, my daughter got her first checks, so I re-explained to her how to write a check, etc.

I also got some coupons for Dick's Sporting Goods, albeit for athletic items that we don't need (the only one buying anything there these days is Greg, when he needs fishing supplies, and they're so expensive!), and the two exercise tops that I had ordered from Kohl's for free, thanks to the Discover Deals Kohl's Cash.  They're not as good quality as the Under Armour shirt I had bought in-store a couple of months back, but I would have had to pay $5 OOP for just one Under Armour shirt, whereas with the brand that I picked I was able to get two shirts for nothing out of pocket :)

When it was time to check whether the chicken was properly cooked, my digital thermometer wasn't working :( However, I remembered that the last time it happened, I only had to slightly move the button battery in its little cage so I did that and it came back on. Woohoo!

So when it was time for dinner, I suddenly got the urge for Chinese food something fierce. So I asked my daughter if she wanted to come with me to get Chinese, and she was excited until I nixed Panda Express because A) I don't like it and B) it's 20 minutes away.  So then she didn't want the local Chinese food and didn't want pizza from Domino's either so then I offered for her to get a sub from Publix and she was fine with that. I was about to call the Chinese restaurant with my order when I realized that it would mainly rice and chicken and I had just cooked a crapload of chicken and I still had cooked brown rice in the fridge... so my frugal ways came back to me and I told her "Ah never mind, I'll just eat this at home!".

But by then she was really set on getting a Publix sub so I told her I'd still drive to Publix with her and we brought our Sodapalooza cups with us to get some more free refills.  At Publix, I was really hungry and salivating over the croissant sandwiches (but didn't buy one) and then a really good looking packaged salad (but $8.99 one one salad?  Nope!) and then sushi but once again, I resisted. I did buy a bag of cherries, though, because they were $1.99/lb which isn't terrible and they looked really good. I looove cherries and if I'm going to be bad, better to be bad with cherries than crappy Chinese food, probably!  I also bought my daughter a tiny bag of Doritos and my OOP was just over $10 and I paid with Amex for 3% back in Rewards. I hadn't brought a reusable bag with me but we turned down using a plastic bag since we were buying so little.

I'm super disappointed: they are watery and pretty much tasteless and kind of bitter too. The
cherries I had bought at Aldi were so good!

On our way out of the store, I told my daughter that I'd better check my Florida Lottery ticket at their little scanning machine to see if I had won anything since it'd been a few weeks since I had checked (I usually get a ticket good for 20 drawings in advance, at $1 a drawing) but that I probably hadn't won anything because I very rarely do.  However, instead of saying "Not a Winner!" this time the little display flashed "$73 Winner!".  OH MY. I was so excited, you'd have thought I'd won a lot more, hahaha. My daughter was a little dumbfounded but happy :)  So I guess our lunch at Carrabba's on Thursday will definitely be covered, lol.

So in the end, it was good that we did go to Publix (I mean, I would have eventually checked my ticket anyway but it made the outing a little less of a frugal failure!) and I didn't even crave Chinese so much after that.

On our way home we stopped by RaceTrac and got 3 Sodapalooza refills (2 for me and 1 for my daughter).

I didn't make the best food choices today, but I didn't get Chinese :)

How was your Tuesday? Have you ever won anything?


  1. Aw, thank you, Nathalie. Did you know that I find doing dishes is a very good activity when I am worrying? *ducks the wet sponge you threw at me* :D By the way, you might want to edit your post a bit because you've used a different name for the naughty kitty who knocked down your plant and I know you are usually very careful about their names. Loved that fierce face Princess pulled in the one picture! Oh, she was definitely not happy that you cuddled another kitty! Too cute!

    Hope you have a lovely day, tomorrow. Don't worry too much.

    1. Ha! I clean when I'm angry so maybe I need something to be angry about... like the fact that Greg announced they're coming home tomorrow instead of Friday so now I'm missing out on having "Domestic Friday" before they come home, lol.

      Thanks for the heads-up, I corrected the mistake. My brain is transposing words sometimes. Just like now, I was intending to type "sometimes" and it came out as "something". Arrgh.

      I hope you're having a serene day today, Bless.

  2. Yay on the lottery win. The tree guy estimated $2800 for 3 trees and when he sent a bill, it was just for $2500 so I felt like I had won the lottery haha. My daughter and GD are now gone and I'm feeling sad but have a lot to do. The kitchen floor needs a good scrubbing so guess if I start to get lazy, I can handle that. I really wish DD lived closer! She loves San Fran though and is able to stay at home. Their apartment is small but she doesn't seem to mind and they have absolutely no debt. Rent is $2800 a month but that is cheap for the area- they have been there 5 years and it's rent controlled. What's on your menu- more chicken? I thawed the chicken barbeque and have 2 bags of salad to use up. Why do I continue to buy those? They spoil so fast! Well I need to quit feeling sorry for myself and get busy.

    1. $2,500 for 3 trees isn't as bad as what I had thought... I thought it was for 1 tree, lol. It still hurts the pocketbook, but now you don't have to worry about those trees anymore.

      Aww, I'm sorry you're missing your family. I'm sure you had a great time together. $2800 a month does sound like a good deal for San Francisco from what I've been reading. Will they have to move as their daughter gets older?

      Yep, chicken is on my menu and since it's already roasted, I'm just planning on having it on sandwiches or in a salad. Greg announced they're coming back tomorrow, one day earlier than planned, so I'm going to have to start cooking dinner earlier than planned too and I'm NOT excited about that although I'm happy they'll be back sooner :)

      Have a great day!

    2. There is a fourth tree that he quoted me $2200 for but I'm getting another estimate- it's not going to fall yet! I am still missing them but each day it gets better and I'm busy today too with home visits. There is a school lottery so GD has a good chance of getting into the school they'd like. They are saving for a home too and DD said they would consider Oakland or Berkeley.

    3. When I first read your comment, I thought you mean you were missing the trees and I was going to commiserate with you because I really miss two of the trees that we had to have taken down, LOL.

  3. $73!! That is indeed something to get excited about.

    Your pictures did look really good today. I'm glad you remembered the best setting for closeups. I was seriously shopping for a new camera, but that has to go on the back burner until we take care of all of the damage from the lightning.

    I was also upset when I read Bless's post. I'll take on some of that worry for her, also.

    1. Between you and me, she won't have a shred of worry available to her :)

      I hope you still have money in your budget for a new camera after your lightning damage expenses.

  4. YAY! On the Lottery win. What kind of book was that? Cricket Locust?

    1. Sandie, LOL, I read your comment this morning when I was still sleepy and I was thinking "I don't understand what book she's talking about, did I talk about a book? Oh no, I'm losing my mind!" and I looked through all my post again until I realized that your autocorrect had typed "book" instead of "bug", hahaha. It's a Southeastern Lubber Grasshopper.

  5. YEAH Lottery Winner!!! That is amazing! I never play so I never get anything but that is a lot for one ticket! Awesome job. Lots of great deals too!

    1. It felt very nice to win, for once, hahaha! A lot of times the machine will say "See the cashier" and every time I have a little heart hiccup, thinking maybe I've won something BIG, but it's always because the machine isn't working so the cashier has to use a different machine to see if my ticket won anything :) I feel kind of bad "wasting" $20 on lottery several times a year, but if I didn't spend it on that, I'd spend it on something else and then I would have zero chances of winning. However, I limit myself to that and a scratch-off ticket at Christmas (and the occasional Powerball ticket if the jackpot is really high). No casinos, no other gambling. You could almost feed your whole family for a whole month with my winnings, lol.

  6. Congrats on the lotto win! We used to buy scratch offs for my husband's grandmother (she loved the lotto, but they don't have one in her state, so we'd bring her tickets when we visited), and once I won $5. I was pretty excited, lol.

    Princess looks like a character! She sure needed to tell you about her unhappiness, hah.

    Glad you figured the photography thing out -- your photos are lovely!

    1. Aww, thanks! How sweet of you to have bought your husband's grandmother's lottery tickets! Sweet older people deserve to be treated to things that they like. I wish I were closer to my great aunt (physically) so I could do the same.

  7. I love The Paper Kites...came across them a few years ago.

    Congratulations on your lottery win! $73 is a nice little chunk. The biggest thing I ever won was a set of stainless steel cookware at a company picnic about 30-some years ago (still have some of the pots) and a hammock, also at a company party, about 15 years ago. I guess you could say I have good luck at company picnics.

    I find that I have to use certain camera settings on a regular basis, or I'll forget about them and have to look them up (like the correct settings for the Fourth of July fireworks). Glad you remembered about the manual focus again.

    1. You're the Company Picnic Queen!

      Cameras are too complicated for me. What, we can make satellites take incredible pictures of the cosmos but we can't make a camera that's going to get a perfect picture of a flower, all by itself, 100% of the time? Sheesh.


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