Friday things…

We are back home from our ‘maiden voyage’ and it did have some snafus.

So here we are leaving the driveway. Up ahead on the left is one of our big ponderosas and B didn’t take the turn wide enough so he hit the corner of the awning and snapped off the cover. Fortunately, it didn’t damage anything except the plastic cover which can be taped or replace. The awning worked fine in camp. The drive up to Tahoe was perfect. Not a lot of traffic and we went 55-60 most of the time and the Santa Fe did great. Controlling the steering is something to pay attention to probably because of the weight on the hitch. I don’t know if having a truck resolves that or what but we can’t really entertain the idea of a truck at this point. We have anti sway bars but it’s still something to pay attention to. B did a great job driving though.

So we got up there early and asked if we could check in and Yes, we could. So, here is our spot.

We’ve stayed in this spot before and like it as it is across from the bathrooms.

The campground had way more people than when we were there 2 years ago. I’m guessing pandemic fatigue and everyone wants to be out doing something. Of course, there has to be the one group of campers that are noisy, loud, obnoxious with too many kids running around. Sorry, but I do think one needs to be respectful of Other campers!!! They were certainly not and they moved picnic tables that are NOT meant to be moved together, and were hacking at tree stumps for firewood. Geez, I’m glad they were far enough away that I couldn’t see all there crap. I would not want to be there this weekend with them blaring music.:(

The first night we did a Lodge dinner of stuffed peppers.

I love Lodge cooking and forgot how fun it is to just put the food in and sit back and relax.

The second night we used the Hibachi and I cooked some chicken for me and a Dr. Praeger burger for B. We had potato salad as our side. Quite yummy.

So the second snafu was concerning the battery charge. We were under the impression that the battery and the solar charging would last easily 2-5 days. Well, we were running the frridge all day and by 7pm the battery charge was low and we turned off the fridge. No lights or water pump either. So the next morning we hooked the Santa Fe back up and charged the battery. Then we ran the fridge 2 hours in the morning and 2 in the afternoon. Then we used the water pump as necessary. That seemed to do the trick and the battery held the charge overnight. It was frustrating to have it happen and like I said, we were told the battery was fine for days. Nope. So we are going to have to buy a second battery and they are not cheap. But it should make a difference.

We hooked up Thursday and left by mid morning and had a lovely ride home. I 80 was not too busy so we did fine. Trailering is quite different with this as opposed to the tent trailer and I’m leaving it open till next year whether it is for us at all. I think the difference would be getting a used truck early next year and then seeing how the trailering feels. The SF can do it and it was fine but I think the uptake is a bigger vehicle with a V-8 will make the difference.

Here’s the bed. Comfy and great windows to look out of. That front window is tinted and you can’t see in at all.

Here’s the totally cool kitchen. We can’t use the microwave unless we’re hooked up to a 30 amp( I guess, not too sure of that).

On our way out we stopped at the Donner Party Memorial.

She was a survivor, I think.

So, today(Friday) I went for my first shot of Velcade in this final round. How long it will keep in remission is anyone’s guess but I hope for a while at least.

WEll, I’m off to take DEX and probably rest.

How to do a morning home reset.

The concept of a house re-set is from the Youtube vlogger minimom. She just recently stopped doing her youtube channel and she is missed. A honest, forthright person who is a minimalist and has 2 young children. She talked about a morning reset and an evening one. So I’ve adopted the idea as a house reset in the morning.

Basically, you go thru each room and pick up whatever doesn’t belong there and put it away and tidy each room. You’re not really cleaning as such, just being sure things are where they belong and the room is ‘set’ for the day. I don’t do an evening reset myself as by that time everything is done except maybe emptying the dishwasher which B does.

I usually start in the bedroom. I make the bed, tidy any books I’ve been reading and take out the laundry basket from the closet.

This is looking out to the north side of the house where the iceberg roses are blooming.

I keep one orchid in this room on the crate that was mounted on the wall. I put B’s collection of Dylan books inside the crate.

Next, I do the bathroom reset. Empty trash can, swipe the sink and swish the toilet bowl. That’s usually all I do. We only each have a towel and those are on hooks.

I use two of my pinecone ware mugs for Q tips.

The front room usually only needs a pickup of anything that might have been put on the table. This doesn’t happen too often unless there’s a project going on.

My office area can get messy with papers but i put them in a crate that I really love that has a hinge. So I can open and close it.

This is my “office” box.

The kitchen also is just reset so everything is off the counters, breakfast dishes done and in the dishwasher. If I’ve been making bread or cooking , all that gets cleaned up and things put away.

Overall, the reset may take me 10 minutes, maybe 15 depending how the kitchen is.

Having become more minimal is definitely a key to a simple clean house that doesn’t require lots of hours of work to maintain.

Right now I have my VW loaded with another load for the thrift store. Stuff just adds up and how I look at what I need changes so things get decluttered.

Simple Sunday

We’re busy getting the Rubicon set up for camping at Donner State park this week. I have most of what I need in there at this point.

I still need to prep some food as I plan on using the Lodge this time to make stuffed peppers with a tomato sauce. I might do a mac and cheese in the Lodge the 2nd night but still undecided. I like to use the small hibachi for BBQing so I might do that instead. We went thru all the stuff from the tent trailer and whittled it down to what we want in the new trailer. We have the white corelle dishes, bowls, and a serving platter, 2 pots, and 2 fry pans. I’m not sure I need 2 fry pans so when we’re up there I’ll see what we’re using.

This is a very quick trip and I’m not sure if we’ll be able to really tell what we need or don’t need. We’re hoping to find some place with hook ups in the next month so we can try out the things that run with power and the sewer hookup.

The kittens are growing and are now annoying tweens running around the barn. We are pretty sure we are not going to bring them in the house. The main reason is my daughter( who is really the one taking care of them) is actually allergic to cats so she has to wear a mask out in the barn. They are really cute though. MamaKat is quite friendly and we’re planning on her spay next week after we’re back from camping. Hopefully, we can get her in the cat carrier.

We had a nice BBQ of burgers, chicken and a veggie burger for my daughter’s birthday with a fruit tart for dessert. It was all yummy. I bought the Dr. Praeger burgers this time and I think they are way better the the processed Beyond meat stuff.

This week Flylady’s zones are the entry way and the kitchen. Our entryways are fine and maybe just need a spruce up but i’m not sure I’ll get to the kitchen zone till later in the week. It seemed like I just did it as the same thing happened last month when the week had 2 zones.

It’s supposed to be quite hot tomorrow with temperatures hitting 100. It’s way too early for such hot weather but I guess global warming is to be blamed. We are watering a lot so our water bill is going to go up.

I’m working on an idea for a series of posts about cooking. What I want to do is pick one or two recipes from every cookbook I own. If it passes the test of tastes good, ease of making, etc, I’ll keep the cookbook, if not, I’ll donate it back to the pet bookstore. I just feel I have way too many cookbooks that I’ve never made a recipe from. I like to look at them but not cook from them so that’s the challenge.

Frugal Friday

It’s almost the end of the month and I’ve come in on budget with groceries. $600. for the month , so I’m very happy with that.

Tomorrow is my daughters birthday, so that extra food stuff will come out of the sinking funds for birthdays. She wants a fruit tart for her birthday cake so that will be bought and then some sort of BBQ food. How the years go by. I’m grateful she lives with us as she does so much in the garden( well, all of it really), and is such a great person. Smart, funny, well educated( librarian), and is fun to be around. Happy Birthday, Sachi!!!

Gas prices are going up here in California so I filled up the Santa Fe and it was $50. Towing the Rv will certainly add to the gas bill but that’s what it takes. Next week we plan on going up to Donner Lake for the maiden voyage. Only 2 nights since I scheduled my Velcade shot for Friday. I could have bumped it out a week but didn’t really think that far ahead so it is what it is.

We’ve been putting things in the Rubicon and it is so great that there will be a place for everything. There was in tent trailer, but everything was in bins that needed to come out and often it got a little messy with bins on the bench. In the Rubicon, the bathroom stuff will be in the bathroom and kitchen stuff in the kitchen. So cool.

After my appt with Dr. Laptalo, that went fine BTW, we headed over to Ikea to get some things for the Trailer. We needed kitchen towels,Ikea’s .79 towels are the best) bath towels, a paring knife, and a comforter and pillows. In the tent trailer we just slept in our down bags, no sheets. So since this is an actual bed we needed a top blanket. I don’t keep extra sheets or blankets in the house just what I use on the bed. Same with towels. We have 4 towels in the bathroom. That’s it. Ikea was busy even at 10:30 in the morning. Crazy.

Today, I’m making an Ooni pizza for dinner. I’m also making a loaf of sourdough sandwich bread in the Zojirushi. I have a few house chores and then I plan on going to the pet bookstore to get some paperbacks for camping.

Flowers by the front door.

.I did the budget for June. We still have 4 more UCD payments from the copay big mistake of August 2019. But since there’s no interest on this , that’s ok. Plus, they did the UCD grant for quite a bit of that month. It was extraordinarily high because Barclay had an IGIV which is $41,000 ( yes, you read that right) each time. So I’m more than happy to pay this copay amount over time.

We have 2 annual bills in June as well. AAA roadside assistance and Costco membership. I put these on auto pay so they will go on our credit card, I hope. If not, it’s the checking acct. Can’t quite remember which I did.

I plan on keeping the food budget to $600 again. That might be a little low for 4 people but I’m still using freezer food and pantry so that should help.

Simple Sunday

A nice quite change in the weather with clouds and quite a bit cooler. We had a nice walk even if AH was there stomping as usual. We just mostly ignore him.

Tonight, I plan on BBQing chicken to use in some recipes this week. I probably will BBQ some tofu as well. I think I’ll make a macaroni salad or use some potatoes.

I’ve been using the Zojirushi Bread maker to make the bread dough this week. I never cook the bread in the bread maker, just the dough and then do the final rise in a pan and bake. It’s nice to have the sandwich bread as opposed to the Dutch oven boules. I’ve been adding sourdough to the sandwich bread so there is a nice tang to it.

I’ve been rotating all the pantry items and freezer and it’s looking pretty good. I’ve used up stuff from the freezer such as frozen peppers, chicken broth, chicken, tomato sauce from last summer, so i think I’ll be ready for ‘new’ veggies from the garden and a restock of things. The prepper pantry also has been gone through and I have a good idea of what worked for us and what really didn’t. There definitely was a learning curve with the pandemic. Somethings I bought were definitely things we wouldn’t ordinarily use so I doubt I’d buy them again. Powdered whole milk being one of those things. I suppose in some baking I could use it but it’s not quite my style. Fortunately, the milk I bought was under $15. ( can’t remember the exact amount but like 12.99?

I put some items in bins labeled” prepper prepper pantry”. So there’s some pastas, tunas, canned chicken( Costco), soups, and a few other things. This is like the real prepper pantry if there was an emergency. So that’s what works for me. Also, I’m scaling back non food items too. I like having an extra Costco pack of toilet paper but I don’t need 3 containers of laundry soap. I am glad to have extra disinfecting wipes though. I can always use those.

So most of you know from reading my blog we lost our beloved cats Ollie and Winnie almost 2 years ago. We’ve wanted kitties but with the pandemic we didn’t feel we could go get any at a shelter. so I’ve been asking Ollie and Winnie and Tucker to send us some kitties. Well, about a month ago a young tabby showed up by the barn. My son started taking care of it and it’s quite friendly overall. So we thought great a barn cat , which we do need, to keep rats/mice out of the barn. We figured we’d get her fixed as soon as we could get close to grab her but this is what we found in the barn 2 days ago

Clearly, we missed that opportunity. These are at least 5 week old kittens so something was up we didn’t know about. We are thrilled really. But we’re not sure how to get them in the house or on the sun porch. They are too young to be taken from mama kat so??? We are kind of thinking another week and then try and take them to the sunporch. We’re not sure but probably these will be inside/outside cats. Normally I wouldn’t do that as coyotes do get cats around here but we need some mousers so it’s a conflict. They are pretty darn cute. So now we have an instant cat family!!!!

Tomorrow I go for labs so we’ll see how the lower Dex affected anything if at all.

Not frugal Friday

Of course, the main reason is forking over $$ for the RV. But it’s been a long time coming.

It looks bigger than it is !!!

So this is a 16 ft trailer with a slide out. I’ll take some inside pictures soon. It’s everything we could want and more. Solar already on the roof, nice bathroom and a full size trailer refrigerator with a freezer.

The Santa Fe did great and Barclay did a great job driving home. I think uphill to Tahoe will be a stress but we will just have to take it slower. WE still need to buy the hose connections, sewer, water, black water, and the chock blocks, and a Ryobi thing for the stabilizers. It seemed like there were a few other things but I can’t remember now.

We are pretty excited. We’ll( I mean Barclay)will finish cleaning the tent trailer and then we’ll put it on craigs list and marketplace. That should recoup a small amount of money back.

So I took the Dex when I got home and really the 8mg is not really a big deal. I’m still overly active both mentally and physically but it’s nothing like the 16 mg. If my numbers changed on my next lab results then I would need to go back to the 16mg for the last round.

Tonight is Ooni pizza. I plan on only 2. A cheese one and a prosciutto one. I need to look up about the prosciutto one if I put it on before I bake it or after?

Velcade, Round 5, shot #3.

Today is my shot 3 and the last in this round. I’m really glad to be over this. I had another day of what I think is, toxic overload, and I feel just kind of lousy for a day. It does pass but it’s the only thing that I can think of that would randomly occur. This has happened twice before on day 3 or 4 after my shot so I’m pretty sure it’s connected. Today I won’t take Dex because tomorrow we need to be at the RV dealer and I cannot deal with stuff if on Dex. So I’ll have to delay it till tomorrow afternoon. It’ll be interesting to see how I feel without the dex after my shot.

Things are moving along with the RV purchase. Today after my shot I will meet B over at the dealer to leave the Santa Fe to get the anti- sway bar put on and trailer brakes. I’m definitely concerned about towing with the SF but it is what it is and by all accounts it should be able to do it. I think, though, next year we will have to look at a used truck. We can’t use any more savings this year so hopefully all will be fine till we can get a truck. I’m also pretty sure going up to Tahoe will be SLOW. It’s quite the climb and towing will be a challenge I’m sure. Going down toward Capitola though the only real climb is Hwy 17 and we can actually go down to Watsonville and bypass 17, so we probably will do that.

I’ve been cleaning out the fridge and freezer and using up odds and ends. I’m writing some menus based on what to use and it’s going well. I had to throw out some moldy cheese that I didn’t get to but that’s ok. so far we’ve had green chili enchiladas, nachos with beans, peppers and sausage( not yet but soon), and breakfast for dinner as we have lots of eggs.

Walking is going fine and we are out there at 5:30am. AH is still there and doesn’t seem to ever take a break. After running into B last week he has backed off when he passes us and stays somewhat to the right. He never apologized or anything but after that incident he has stayed more to the right. He was walking in the middle of the path with his dog on his right when he knocked shoulders with B. B could have fallen and hurt something. Anyway, we’re walking and it’s all okay.

Here’s a couple of photos of the Ooni pizzas

This was the best one that I made for lunch a few days later.

This was the marguerite. There’s definitely a learning curve but I quickly was able to time each pizza and turn. It’s about 60 seconds for the first turn and then about 20-30 seconds for the second and third turns.

Five on Friday

  • We’re still waiting to hear on the RV. I’m guessing the one that came in was the bunk bed one as I saw it on their website. That’s ok. The longer the money is in our savings the better, I guess. It’s a big leap for us to use savings but as I said( mostly to myself), if not now , When?? So that’s it. Especially after fellow blogger Teresa just up and died suddenly, who know how much time any of us have. I wouldn’t risk using more money than I feel we can handle though. We only have SS as income and some retirement savings but relative to most retirees, it’s probably very miniscule. But regardless, we’ll manage somehow or another.
  • The 8 mg of Dex was pretty easy to take. It’s still Dex so there is that. Next week I plan on doing the 12mg again.
  • We fired up the Ooni because it said do a 30 minute burn at full temperature. So that’s done and I have dough ready. I plan on doing 3 pizzas :marguerite, pepperoni, and a broccoli bacon/ veggie bacon.

I wrote on the chalkboard, 30 pizzas at $10 will pay for the Ooni. It’s probably less than 30 since most of the wood fired 12 inch pizzas like at Mod pizza and 965 Blast are more like 12.99 and up. But I figured I’d just do it at $10 and times that by 30.

  • Our weather is supposed to cool slightly which is nice. This season has already been too hot and dry. I am really worried about fire this year. We have a good defensible space but even so a big fire could just blast through.

Vecade,Round 5, shot #2

I’m heading down to Rocklin for my shot. I’m planning on taking the 8 mg of Dex and compare that to the 12mg last week. 12mg was WAY easier and I pretty much breezed thru it. But for comparisons I thought it’d be interesting to try the 8mg.

Then I’m going to go to Walmart for a pickup. It’s not a big order and there isn’t that much ‘dinner’ stuff in the order but more like things such as yogurts, salad stuff, chips, bread, oh, I added some organic chicken, bananas, bubbly water, and some other things. I love doing the pickup as I’d never get thru Walmart as a store. I never really shopped there so I don’t know the layout and it would probably take me an hour just to get thru. Pickup is a breeze.

I managed to stain most of the new fence and just have around the corner to do or until the stain is gone. I don’t plan on buying another gallon for a bit.

We are still in waiting mode on the RV and actually haven’t heard a word from them. I’m guessing the RV hasn’t come in yet so there’s not much to do. We did decide to break up signing the papers, taking the RV class, and having the hitch put on into 3 separate visits. I just cannot sit thru all that at once. I realized that it’s just sensory overload for me and it’s better for me to take control and do it this way.

I managed to reserve a camp spot up at Donner Lake for 2 nights just to get out and try the trailer. Donner SP is not one of my favorite places but it’s pretty and close to lots of walking trails.

I pulled all kinds of leftovers from the freezer so dinner will be a choice of that. Most are single servings of things like pulled pork, mac and cheese, beans, rice, so whoever wants what can get it. We ended up doing just the black beans and pulled pork and made burritos with avocado and cheese.

Exciting….. my Ooni pizza oven showed up so when I get home from Rocklin I will set it up. I don’t plan on doing a pizza tonight though as the dough isn’t made and I want to get some tile for underneath it. Very Excited though!!!!