It’s been a nice week. Very low key overall. The weather is cooler but still no rain. I guess I’m ready for some rain and we do it need it as things are quite dry.
The small fall garden we planted has given us some lettuce and chard and even a few radishes my daughter grew in a # 10 can. Too funny but they were the best radishes yet. We’ve had 2-3 nice salads and that saves a bit from buying store-bought.
I’ve been to the gym a few times to keep up on weights and treadmill but have been coming straight home and not having to go into Safeway. That really does save money. I think the Walmart pickup has really been excellent as I can see the amount of what I’m buying and planning meals too.
Today I’m heading to Costco so that won’t be too frugal. This list includes Vanilla which for some reason is exorbitant. It’s been that way for a while. Last year when B was still working I had ordered vanilla beans and made my own extract. But that is used up now.
I’m planning on getting a Costco pizza for dinner which is a money saver since it’s $10 for a huge pizza. I end up freezing some but that’s okay.
The year is winding down and I’m glad that 2019 will be over. It’s been a hard year with everything. B still hasn’t decided about going back to work but I think it’s about 90% that he doesn’t want to deal with all the stuff again. We’re not sure how the disability payments will go in January. They’re due to end Dec 31st so if there’s an extension, I don’t know yet. It’ll be harder with just SS $ but I think it will work although Costco’s trips will be MUCH smaller:)
Not sure where the time has gone. I missed Five on Friday and Simple Sunday.
I haven’t actually been doing anything all that different although I have been making lists of things to do and then ticking them off. Maybe that’s where the time went.
We went to Costco on Thursday and did a huge shopping that completely blew my grocery budget for the month but I did get plenty of food for the rest of the month. Plus some things were big items that last a long time like laundry soap, dish soap, nuts( 2 bags), case of pineapple, case of olives, and lots of other things for the pantry. so I won’t be ordering Walmart groceries for 2 weeks and hope that catches me up on my grocery budget till October 1st.
The windows and trim are done and just need painting.
I painted a small dresser that was white a darkish grey. Not sure where I’ll put it but it is useful and pretty as it has carved acorns on the handles. This was a thrift store find many years ago. I’ve done 2 coats but will do a third this morning.
I made a lovely sourdough sandwich loaf yesterday and it was almost gone by dinner. Plus I did make grilled cheese so half the loaf was used there. I had taken my starter out of the fridge and had been feeding it for 3 days. I wasn’t sure if it would revive but it did. I tried a recipe I had printed a while ago. Quite simple but I have another I want to try this morning. Both are started in the bread machine and then cooked in a pan. I like doing it this way. Of course, the best way is in the dutch oven using the slow rise method. but sometimes you just want sandwich bread.
I cleaned out a lot of things from the chest freezer over the weekend too. That was on my to-do list. It looks better. There’s only so long I can keep bags of spinach I thought I use for smoothies. Plus some ‘burritos’ I made (4) that no one ever ate and were lingering at the bottom of the freezer. I still have 2 bags of walnuts in there that need to be shelled. I bought those last summer from a friend so I need to use them soon in baking.( I probably overestimated how many walnuts we can realistically use).
We’re actually supposed to get rain/thunderstorms today. I guess we’ll see.
This week is the bathroom zone if you’re following Flylady. I’ll do that this morning plus it’s towel day. ( I wash our 4 towels on Mondays).
Tomorrow B has clinic and labs. My daughter has offered to drive so I get a break. Last week we had to drive down to get the prescriptions that had finally been cleared with the Cobra insurance. We let here around 8:40 and were down there by 9:30( amazing when there’s no stop and go traffic). Tomorrow though we need to leave by 7:30 and that will be morning commute traffic.
Not sure I have 5 things as nothing much is going on.
Let’s see…. My daughter is taking B down to the UCD med center pharmacy since we forgot his pills on Tuesday. Kinda a bummer since that’s all we needed. Then they are going to Costco to pick up a few things. B is actually going in but staying away from people but that’s a first. Then they are going over to Celestino’s to get a pizza for dinner. Yummm.
I going to the gym just to do weights.
Oh, I didn’t update the rib Xrays. So as I mentioned, I had really intense rib pain about 2 weeks ago. I was quite concerned as it felt like in the ‘old’ days of my Myeloma rib fractures. Fortunately, my doctor is very responsive and ordered x rays. So it showed no acute fractures but ‘chronic bilateral fractures’. In other words the ‘old ones’. SO my guess is I pulled muscle around the old fractures and that was the intense pain. Also, good news is that it seems to be almost gone. But I’m still being careful at the gym and only doing very light weights.
We’ve been walking every morning and it’s definitely darker each day. Or the sun is coming up later:)
Barclay and Sachi finished repairing the dishwasher so that’s very exciting!!!! We now have a working dishwasher again and the part was just under $200. So better than buying a new one.
Both of them, together, finished the cement step outside the front door. As I mentioned, we had hoped to put a deck out there to match the front door level but that would have cost quite a bit, so B came up with the idea of expanding the cement step and leveling the unevenness of the pavers that were there. ( kinda hard to explain but it was not good for ‘older ‘(us) people to step out onto uneven pavers.)
Next, I ordered the 2 windows to replace the ones in the front entryway. They had whatever it’s called when the dual panes get cloudy in between and there is nothing you can do. So it’s been on our list for a while. Now it’ll take a month to get done but they are at least ordered.
That’s it for now.
Another good week.
The doctor’s appt went well and he’s graduated to doing clinic just once a week. That’s really great. His labs all look good and the prednisone is controlling the diarrhea. I’m pretty sure it was a mild case of Graft vs Host in the gut but it’s under control now. He will slowly taper off the prednisone next week.
I used the IP again and made polenta and the next night did chili. I guess as long as it’s under my Heywood Cabinet and not taking up real estate in the kitchen, I’m okay using it for certain recipes. Polenta in the Instant Pot is particularly good if you haven’t tried that. When you made polenta on the stovetop it is hands-on stirring for about 30 minutes. So this is a really great way to make it and it is very creamy. I put it in a loaf pan and chill and then cut in slices and fry with a little tamari and then I top with cheese. So I’m glad I didn’t just get rid of it without giving it some time. Time is an amazing thing!
I’m going to Costco this morning for a few things and to bring my receipt where I was double charged. I feel kinda weird about it but I’ll try.
We’re adjusting to life without Bonnie. Rocky seems better than at first. He’s getting a lot of attention, so that helps.
I finished a few really excellent psychological thrillers by Dana French. ” In the woods” and ” Broken Harbor”. She’s a great writer but the stories are dark but compelling. I also picked up a few books at the book exchange at the Cancer clinic. First, this is a terrific idea to have a bookshelf for patients to pick up books and drop off. Kiwanis house has quite a few bookcases thru out their facility and I definitely used them. So I picked up Ernst Hemmingway’s ” A moveable Feast” which was published posthumously. I ‘ve never really like Hemmingway’s stuff but this was really great. It’s a collection of essays about when he lived in Paris in the 1920s. I would highly recommend it. It is a masterpiece of writing. I’m interested in going back an rereading some of his other books.
I dropped off about 8 books including some very new books I had bought but really didn’t want to keep. Flylady’s new book “CHAOS” was one. And some others too.
We received the first Cobra insurance bill and it’s a whopper. Part of the bill still has our son on for medical, but that will come off as of 9/1 when his Kaiser Permanente kicks in so there will be another very large bill in August as well. Big as in $1200. Yes, that’s big! But then it should drop by about $600, I think… we’ll see:(
Ha, it is a miracle!!!
Just when I sent a priority letter to NYC Corrections the next day, my documents were in the priority envelope I had paid for from before. So I now have in hand my brand new birth certificate, my original marriage license and the court documents for my legal name change. What a miracle!!! All in all, it only took 8 months. Now I can get a passport and the new real ID from California.
Today B has a transfusion early. He needs both blood and platelets but it’s been 18 days for the blood so that is an improvement. Like I said we see the transplant doctor Thursday but we know he has tentatively scheduled him for another chemo in April. I also, did not quite register the co-pay issue or maybe I was in denial but 20% of 500,000 is $100,000. I just can’t get it in my head that we would be responsible for that. I mean we don’t even have any retirement money to speak of so WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO??? I hope this is wrong and I’m going to have B call UHC and talk to the coordinator to find out. Somehow it just doesn’t seem right.
I’m heading to Costco this morning too. I need some greens, avocados, almond milk and a few other things which I’m sure will morph into a bigger shop. Oh, and I need to return 2 items. One is the Instant Pot Cookbook which is, in my opinion, a waste. I’ve never returned a book and feel kinda weird about it. Like what read the book and then give it back. Heck, I may not do it after all.
Here’s a few pictures of the snow in Tahoe:
Well, off to do laundry. It’s sheet day!
Well, it arrived and guess what? It’s still raining. (and snow in the Sierras)
We did have a break on Thursday and Friday so that was nice. Even though it was cloudy at least it wasn’t pouring down rain.
Thursday I saw my oncologist in Sacramento and it went well. I told him I was somewhat concerned about the 4 point jump but he didn’t seem worried and even gave me a look like. ..What??? it’s still n the normal range and your ratio is fine. So I did feel better.
Then I headed up to Costco for what I hope is the months shopping. I bought a huge amount and the car was loaded. But I got everything on my list. I did add in 2 more Orgain protein drinks( at almost $50) because B needs that to help keep his protein intake up. Plus you honestly can’t beat Costco’s prices on things like that.
Friday was just a gym day but it was really packed with people which I don’t like plus I see so many people NOT wiping equipment after they use it. Ahh…Why????
Today I’m taking B for labs and then just running over to the bank. I was going to go into Home Depot for some pansies or something for the entryways but with the rain, I probably won’t. if you follow Flylady there was a second zone this week and that was the dining room and entryways. So as I always like to freshen up the entryways with something, I thought some color would be cheerful.
Tonight I’m going to try an Instant pot pork chop recipe. So far everything I’ve made has been delicious. So we’ll see. I don’t usually cook much pork because generally I overcook it and it’s not all that good. My daughter has made pork kabobs on the barbequed that have been very tasty though.
Well, it has been a really busy week with doctor appts, chemo( still 3more days to go), Costco not once but twice. Uhgggg, I ended up going again to Costco today as the Vet didn’t get the dogs pills in on Monday. PITA. So, it was back down. I ended up getting gas again. Plus, I figured I’d get the stuff on sale. B has been using Orgain drinks to bolster his food intake and it was on sale. I got both the powder and the liquid. It’s pricey but since he’s lost so much weight (almost 20 lbs) the doctor and I want him to eat eat eat. He’s always been way to thin and now it’s critical he gain weight.
Anyway, this has not been a thrifty week at all. I’m not sure if I’m just going to not go to the store for the rest of the month or just minimally. I do need milk and almond milk so that’s more$ right there. Oh well. It’s only Feb 8 so that’s a while till the end of the month but as of right now, I’m over budget. I’ve been budgeting $200 a week for everything, food, and non-food. It’s actually been spot on. Since we do provide food for our adult children it’s more than if it was just the 2 of us. My daughter does pay rent/food but my son who’s in school full time we let slide.
I’ve also been on the phone a lot, which I greatly dislike, arranging payments for the hospital bill for B’s port placement and the surgeon. I did the one over 4 months at $350 a month and the other over 10 months at $270. They were very accommodating but still not really budget friendly. Well, at least they let us do payments.
We haven’t heard back from the financial coordinator about the insurance for the transplant or sending off the BM kits to the brothers. Maybe next week.
Next week I have an appointment with an SS advisor about Medicare. We are both still covered by B’s insurance but I’m thinking if I switch over to Medicare then that will give us an idea of what our monthly amount will be. I’m sure it’s more than what we pay now but it has to be done sooner or later. So, we’ll see what he says. I need to be sure the drugs I might need in the future such as the Velcade I was on will be covered or at least after we pay the initial amount of our responsibility. Honestly, sometimes I feel as if we are just bumbling thru. Take the SDI, we really had no idea what to put in the form and it was initially rejected. Then after calling them and waiting forever on hold, we had it figured out. Still, sometimes I wonder how are we going to navigate this stuff.
Any suggestions for Medicare would be most welcome.
Well, on a more positive note, I’m making a BBQ chicken pizza for dinner and leftover gourmet veggie for the Dad.