Sunday, July 23, 2017

Quiet Sunday At Home ~ 7/23/17

Sunday... one week since Greg and our son left on their trip and another week before they return. I'm not counting the days until I have to start cooking dinner again, but I miss them! On the plus side, though, it HAS been rather quiet around here, not that they make that much noise.

I went to bed at 11:30 a.m. last night and didn't get up until 10 a.m. Oh no, don't go thinking that I slept straight through!  Of course the bladder was being dramatic again AND, speaking of dramatic, Explorer was being a drama king and needy. He had to be in my face all night, wanted to be up at 6:30 a.m., making a nuisance of himself and finally I had to kick him and Princess out of my bedroom at 9 a.m. because she had come in to play with him and they were just making way too much noise.  Well, for the next hour and a half he would periodically come back to my door and cry and cry and CRY the most pathetic cries, but I was tired and annoyed so I just ignored him. Finally I got up at 10 a.m. and fed all the cats.

The sky is already overcast and gray today, although the rain isn't predicted until much later on this afternoon. Methinks it'll be another rainy afternoon like yesterday's.  That's fine with me since I don't plan on going anywhere, but my daughter is supposed to be driving back from her dad's at some point today.  Oh I just noticed that it is raining and it's only 11:20 a.m.  See? I was right :)

I brewed my coffee and had another bowl of generic Cheerios for breakfast, rationalizing that I need to use up those brown bananas anyway, but really it's because I was too lazy to make an omelet, which is what I really should have had.

Explorer, still being needy and probably exhausted from all his drama, came to cuddle against me. I ate my breakfast while watching Law & Order: Criminal Intent on ION TV since today is a marathon day, catching up on emails and the news.

Oh sure, you go to sleep, why don't you?!
I earned some SB and all the Microsoft Rewards credits for the day.

Sunday is the day for new coupons so I unlocked new digital offers on my CVS Ibotta and Publix apps and printed 6 coupons via Swagbucks. SInce it was so few, I also clipped them and put them away in my coupon organizer right away.

Zinio alerted me that the latest issue of Kiplinger's Magazine is available for me to read for free via my library system.  I still haven't read the previous issue so I need to get cracking!

I went outside to snap a picture of the rain and realized that it really wasn't hot at all, so I turned off the AC in the house and opened the windows in the living room IN JULY!  Hooray!  The kittens posted themselves at the windows pretty much right away, hahaha.

Sniffing that sweet, sweet rain!
But by 1:00 p.m. it had gotten very humid downstairs so I closed the windows and turned the AC back on. I checked in with my daughter to confirm she was coming home tonight (she was) so I turned the AC back down to 73F in the kitchen so her room will be more comfortable tonight.

I installed the darkening window shades in my bedroom. I had to cut them down to size but they're stick-on so it was easy to install them atop the mini blinds, behind the curtains. And, while not perfect, my room IS darker now, which means it'll be even harder to get up in the mornings, LOL.

I used a "broom" with a washable and reusable microcloth to "sweep" my bedroom, the upstairs hallway, the main stairs and then the hallway, exercise room, breezeway, part of the cat room and kitchen. My main goal was trying to capture most of the cat hair and dust so it's not perfect but wow, I got rid of the equivalent of a kitten in cat hair, lol.  I threw the microcloth in the laundry room's hamper so I'll wash it with the regular laundry tomorrow.  The kittens made that task challenging since they kept on thinking it was a game so they were around me at all times and I had to constantly tell them to move and push them along with the broom, sigh.  So cute but they do make my job harder than it needs to be at times. But did  I mention cute?  The cutest, really.  Also today or tomorrow they turn ELEVEN MONTHS. Wow.

It was 1 p.m. so I made my lunch: turkey spinach wrap, lettuce and cucumber salad with light balsamic dressing and 2 clementines. I forgot to take a picture but, basically, the same thing that I eat for lunch most days!  I'm out of spinach so I guess I'll have to venture into Aldi this week at some point.

Since I'm watching over-the-air TV and I'm alone at home, I decided to work on some of the tasks that required me to use all of the bandwidth available and started backing up all of my June pictures to my external drive.

I was reading a thread on Reddit Personal Finance that mentioned the Florida Division of Unclaimed Property (the website name is horrible, it sounds like a scam, but it's the real government website!) and it reminded me to check whether or not Greg or I had any unclaimed property. We don't (and I guess that's good!) but I also checked my older kids' names and Middle Son is listed as being owed money from a pizzeria job that he only held for a week, several years ago. It probably will be less than $100, but I gave him a call with the good news. We chatted for a couple of minutes all is well, he's about to finish his summer classes and then will be able to obtain his A.A. but isn't going to his graduation ceremony.

My brother from Paris just posted an update on Instagram that his beloved cat passed away today. She was 22, which means he had her for half of his life.  He must be devastated :( I shated the news with Youngest Son and Daughter since they'd met Bergamote (the cat in question) a couple of years ago and we're all sad.

I backed up my June pictures to my external drive, deleted all the ones that I took just for the blog and don't care to keep, and then continued backing up that external drive to another external drive (just in case).  Technology does make life harder too, you know?

Meanwhile, I went through the school files for this past year and archived my daughter's files, as well as prepped a new file for my son's upcoming school year. Last year, when my daughter and I toured UF, the Admissions rep had said they were starting to use the Coalition Application and that, moving forward, students would be able and advised to start inputting their transcripts and other application information manually in the system starting in 9th grade, so it wouldn't be such a big deal once he is a senior and gets ready to submit his application. Too bad that it only includes University of Florida, Florida State University, Florida Polytechnic University and Florida Atlantic University.  Anyhoo, when I checked the UF website this afternoon to verify this (as I planned on starting to work on this with my son when he comes back from his camping trip), I didn't see any information specifically about being able to get started in 9th grade so I emailed the Admissions counselor responsible for our county to get some clarification. I do hope the answer is that he can start working on it now because otherwise, we need to start keeping a list of what accomplishments he had each year (which, actually, I probably should start keeping anyway since the other colleges won't be using that application and he'll need to be listing all of this on their applications as well).

I also emailed the 10th grade Guidance Counselor to request that Youngest Son be placed in Biology HONORS and not just Biology (as he had requested), and also to ask what he needs to do to apply to take the PERT test this year and when/how to do it. The PERT test is a college readiness test that he is required to take in 10th grade in order to apply for Dual Enrollment in 11th and 12th grade.  I should have emailed Guidance at the end of the school year about all that but I kept on forgetting.

Then I sent 2 long emails to Youngest Son about all of this, my expectations for him in 10th grade regarding dual enrollment and college interests, and then explaining how he will be able to pay for college aside from dual enrollment (with the small tuition only 2 year State College prepaid fund that we are paying into as well as the 529 account I opened for him this year) so he doesn't think that paying for college is going to mean going into a lot of debt (as long as he commits to doing dual enrollment and keeps on being serious about his studies).   I hope he reads the emails and asks questions.

I wasn't really hungry this afternoon but ONLY because... I found the 2nd bag of dark chocolate espresso beans that I had bought on clearance a couple of months ago (before I started my diet).  The bad thing is that obviously I'm not being super healthy. The good thing?  Well, let's just say that the espresso beans have greatly stimulated my bowels... so... probably lost some weight right there, lol.  I had my usual strawberry shake for a 4 p.m. snack too.

For dinner I heated up the last cup of whole wheat linguine with 1/2 a cup of Tuscan herb pasta sauce and I made a fried egg sandwich with a whole wheat bun, an egg and a tablespoon of reduced fat cheddar cheese. Then I had some grapes for dessert. So I don't think it was too too bad.

I lucked out by hitting 2 big SB Search Awards today again so I met my 1st Goal without doing much of anything (well I did run 10 videos for the last 2 SB so I could meet it for sure). Yippee!

To Do List
  • Plan today's food intake REUSING YESTERDAY'S PLAN
  • Exercise 
  • Record today's food intake into MFP 
  • Make crepes or pancakes with sour milk
  • Empty dishwasher 
  • Do the dishes 
  • Print and upload coupons DONE
  • Clip coupons DONE
  • File coupons DONE
  • Back up blog DONE
  • Make dinner menu for the week REUSING LAST WEEK'S PLAN!
  • Make vet appointment for 2 oldest cats' check-up
  • Explore Vanguard's Personal Advisor Services webpage and get started on process 
  • Create Greg's online Social Security Account (with him) and update my documents
  • Post trip pictures on French blog
  • Finish backing up all pictures to my external drive (when Greg and our son are on their camping trip) DONE
  • Figure out where I was in the process of backing up my external drive! DONE and backed up
  • Make hummingbird nectar
  • Trim bushes in front of the house 
  • Transplant ferns from bin into front yard 
  • Transplant all basil seedlings from berm and patio to the empty garden beds 
  • Pull weeds from planter near house/hose
  • Pull weeds from berm 
  • Pull weeds from garden area 
  • Pull weeds from rose planter 
  • Lay down more cardboard on top of mulch
  • Mulch the berm again (next week)
  • Mow the lawn
  • Edge the berm
  • Decide what to plant in the garden this fall and where
  • Clean all litter boxes 
  • Feed all cats in the morning DONE
  • Feed all cats in the evening DONE
  • Dust Cat Room and Living Room
  • Vacuum downstairs Swept the hall, exercise room, breezeway, part of cat room, part of kitchen
  • Vacuum upstairs - Swept my room and the hall
  • Vacuum both staircases - Swept the main staircase
  • Mend some items from the mending basket
  • Take Youngest Son driving (on hold until he comes back)
  • Vacuum fridge's coils
  • Explore Will and Power of Attorney forms on LegalZoom and discuss with Greg
  • Find a good picture of our cats and order bag from Shutterfly for Daughter with freebie code
  • Check to see if received answer from UF Admissions re: filling out SSAR/Application in 10th grade
  • Check to see if received answer from high school 10th grade Guidance counselor re: biology honors and PERT test application/deadline
  • Inventory what batteries we need for hurricane season
  • Finish the 2014 Powerpoint document for Daughter
  • Add clip art to all 2012, 2013 and 2014 pages that I created and print them
  • Declutter this past year's school files and prep new files for this coming year DONE
  • Tape the Strength Training videos and put on dedicated SD card (once the large TV is reconnected)
  • Put bleach in furnace drain line for maintenance
  • Pour Drano down kitchen sink for maintenance
  • Scrub the WHOLE shower (including ceiling)
  • Clean exercise room vent
  • Vacuum kitchen vents
  • Fix kitchen sliding drawer
  • Install window shades in my bedroom DONE
  • Wash bathroom and hall ceiling, door jamb  (wear old clothes)
  • Write letter to Target CEO (once refund has been issued)
  • Call SunTrust and Chase re: bonds
  • Reconcile FSA records to make sure we're not missing money in the account
  • Add Osmocote plant food to hibiscus and roses
  • Check on beans and papaya seeds (daily) and water as needed  IT RAINED AGAIN
  • Order rain barrel from Home Depot
  • Declutter the old coffee table IN PROGRESS

How was your weekend?


  1. Oh, no! More espresso beans. Hope you were able to sleep last night. :)

    1. I actually was! They probably were not as potent as the ones I ate that one time that kept me up all night!

  2. Sounds like you had a lovely quiet day, though I wouldn't call it relaxing if you swept through the whole house. Actually, you managed to get quite a bit of your list done. I have a massive list to accomplish this week, but with the rain passing through our area today, it is difficult to feel motivated. It is amazing how the lack of sun can suck the energy right out of you.

    It is so sad when one loses a beloved pet. Twenty-two years! I don't think I have heard of a cat living that long.

    How exciting that you found some money for Middle son on that unclaimed property website. I wonder how much it will be? Anything will be more than what he had in his pocket, so I am happy for him.

    Another week away for the guys? It seems like they have been gone much longer than one week. Maybe this week will pass much more quickly.

    1. They'll be back Friday so it'll be less than a week after all, hooray!

      I completely agree with this ---> but with the rain passing through our area today, it is difficult to feel motivated. It is amazing how the lack of sun can suck the energy right out of you.

      The amount Middle Son claimed was probably about $50, I think, based on what his paystub said he had earned that week and how much he had actually received before he quit.

  3. Oh, I'm so sorry to hear about your brother's cat. They really do become a part of the family. <3

    It's hard to believe the kittens are almost a year old! Will you have a birthday party? We bought ours some toys on their birthday the first year, but have not been motivated to do anything since then!

    Thank you for posting the link to the Florida Unclaimed Property website -- it turned out that Michael had a small amount of money due to him, so I've sent that claim in.

    1. Thanks, Laura, yes I expect he's having quite a hard time with her absence. He's not the type of person who communicates so I haven't heard back from him since :(

      You had a birthday party for your kittens? Awww, how adorable! What did you do aside from buying them toys? I was looking at toys at the thrift store the other day but they didn't have those shiny fuzzy pompoms balls that mine love so I didn't get anything. I think we'll just wish them a happy birthday and probably FaceTime that with my daughter since she'll be at UF. It's very hard to believe it's already been a year and yet I feel like we've had them forever!

      Woohoo! So excited for you that you were able to claim some money through that site!

  4. The picture of the kitten sniffing that sweet, sweet rain made me laugh out loud! It shows exactly what cat curiosity is all about.

    1. So true. And cats are very curious creatures, like toddlers. What's that? What's that? It's sometimes exhausting.

      I can't wait until we can open the windows again, can you? Enough with the heat already!


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