There’s lots going on in the gardens and the yard. Flowers are blooming and all three lilac trees are in full bloom. This has been a really good year for flowering trees. Out Cherry trees maintained their blossoms for weeks which was unusual. Now the lilacs are in full swing and very full. The white roses are just starting to bud and a few have flowers. The Cecil Brunner looks to be ready to explode with pink blossoms.
Today I plan on applying the redwood stain to the new fencing. I’m going to use a small roller so I think it will go quickly but I’m not sure how much/far the gallon will go. It certainly wasn’t cheap at $58 a gallon. The garden shed is nearing completion and I have bought the same house paint to paint that. I’m still not thrilled with the way it’s positioned but done is done. We still need to get some roofing to finish the shingles. We had some left over when we had the roof re -done so we just need to get 2-3 more bundles.
The weather is stellar right now with this afternoon being @ 80 degrees. I plan on BBQ some chicken and tofu.
I need to write up my monthly menu and check the freezer. I know I’ve used up quite a bit and when we were in New Brighton my daughter also used up lots of frozen things so that’s good and I can write a list of what needs to be replaced.
After my doctor visit yesterday, which went fine, I stopped at Trader Joe’s in Roseville. I bought some bread things,bagels,pita bread, sandwich bread, some veggies, some frozen things too. TJ’s is great for snacks like sesame sticks so I got a nice variety.
The doctor visit was fine. He said to lower my Dex( from 16 to 12 mg) so it’s maybe not so intense. That’ll be nice. He also said we’ll just wait and see about Round 6. I think if the Dex is more tolerable he’ll go for round 6. I guess we’ll see. All my numbers were still great and my ratio even went down to 1.3 since Lambda went up slightly. So I’m pleased and plus I feel pretty good overall. I do feel pretty lucky that the cancer is being wiped out by Velcade. Unfortunately, there are always rogue cells left behind and that’s why relapse is inevitable. But that’s not now and I refuse to think about something in the future I have no control over.
The weather is going to be lovely this week again and temperatures will be in the 60’s so quite nice. Things are starting to grow and the flowering cherry tree is in full bud. Daffodils are starting to bloom too. My daughter has started a bunch of seeds and is cleaning up garden beds. We’re debating buying a garden shed from costco. It seems a good idea so that we can corral all the tools and mower etc in one spot. The barn works ok but things are scattered and it’s more of my son’s place for his tools. Plus the prepper pantry is on one side of the barn too. We have a carport type area but it’s full of my son’s junk( note to self: time to tell him to clean it up or toss it!)
This week I’m in the bedroom zone so I will paint the inside of the french door. I washed one blanket and a set of curtains. I am debating putting the curtains back up and just using the bamboo blind. I guess it depends on how cold it gets as the curtains do keep out some cold even these are dual pane windows. One of the projects for this year is replacing those windows. They are fine in terms of condition they just aren’t as insulating as they should be. You can really see the difference with the windows we did in my daughter’s room. Really like night and day with keeping the cold out.
I’ve done most of my Sunday chores except to vacuum so I’ll do that next.
I’ve got the Tucson stew in the Staub simmering away and later I will make some brown rice to go with it. I made a loaf of sandwich bread yesterday so we can have that on the side too.
So yesterday was another test for B. This was the cardio stress test. Today it’s an EKG and x rays. So all that’s left is the CT scan in May and he’ll be ready to go to transplant.
Yesterday I drove and my daughter came along and we went to Whole Foods and then Barnes and Noble. Barnes and Noble is such a waste. It is so expensive. I was checking out cookbooks etc and they are full retail price as opposed to Amazon where it’s usually half that. It was nice to look at the books but I want interested in buying.
Then since B hadn’t eaten we went out for brunch and it was really nice to do. I’m definitely a Scrooge when it comes to eating out but this time I was okay with the bill and the food was good. Not great but good.
So then today I’m going to forge forward to Social Security and be prepared to wait. I figure 2-3 hours all said and done. After that, I may go to the gym but it kinda depends on how I feel.
My food budget is pretty much used up for April so I need to use all of what I have in the refrigerator and freezer. Tonight I ‘ll make a homemade pizza. If anything, I’ll need salad stuff but right now I’m set for the next week.
Our weather looks really nice this next week with temperatures in the 70’s which I am so ready for. All our grasses are growing like crazy so the mower will be going none stop. A lot of this is seasonal grass, not lawns. We only have 2 small areas of lawn we keep green.
Some things have been planted but it’s too early for tomatoes, etc. I think my daughter(the gardener) did plant lettuce and radishes so we’ll see how they do.
Next week looks open except me trying to get this crown done. I’m not looking forward to that but since it seems dental with Medicare is non-existent I better do it now. Still, that’s another copay but whatcha going to do?
I so enjoy this time of year of late summer early fall. Of course, my birthday is in September so that’s probably why. Although I think beyond the birthday thing it’s just a beautiful time with cool evenings and warm days. We sat out last night till 8:30 and it was still warm.
The garden is winding down and so is watering the garden. Our water bill was quite huge due to watering so much when it was 100 + for weeks at a time. We’re already watering way less and that should drop the bill next month. I’m still picking green tomatoes so they can ripen in a box. Plus now I’m starting to cut the hard squashes. We have quite a few butternut and spaghetti squash. They will be nice in the fall and winter.
This year our apple tree is in full production so I’ll be making applesauce and pies. I’m going to make a pie today or tomorrow so I can see how it freezes and then defrost and bake. I’d like to experiment to see if this is the best method. Otherwise, it’ll be apple sauce canned.
This morning is a gym morning. We walked this morning as well so that puts me at 4x a week. I’m probably going to add a 5th day next week. It’s great to be back out in the morning. I love moving first thing( well after 1 cup of coffee).
My latest drama is trying to get a certified birth certificate. We would like to get passports so that we can travel or flee the country if necessary( just kidding). So my birth certificate is not embossed. So I figured no problem. I filled out the NYC form paid the fee and voila. Well, no the next day I get an email saying that my first name does not match the birth certifcate so it’s voided. WTF???? My birth name is Aurora Roxana Christina. I have never ever in my entire life used Aurora as that was my mother’s name. So I email back and say I have always only used Christina as my legal name. Nope!! he says, I have to have something with my legal first name. WTF??? I have absolutely nothing. So I’m supposed to email someone else. Such a simple thing and now it’s a f@#King problem. Leave it someone in NYC to be an asshole and screw it up.
Well, I guess I’ll see what happens.
I’ve read a couple of really good books this week. One is ‘Educated’, about a woman born in 1986 to an extreme Mormon family in Idaho. It is so eye-opening. It’s amazing she found herself and escaped. And she went on to obtain her Ph.D. Quite a story. The other is a Jodi Picoult, ‘Leaving Time’. It has a huge twist that is completely unexpected. Great characters.
Dinner is either nachos or leftover homemade ravioli. Not sure which yet!!
I’m still stuffy in the nose and coughing so no gym for me today.
I did walk my 30 minutes this morning but I was huffing and puffing on the last round. ( A sure sign my lungs aren’t working optimally with this cold thing.)
So I will just accept that I can putter around and see what else might need attending to. It is hard to accept such things at times. Even now 13 years out from my diagnosis I clearly remember as if it were yesterday, how limited I was. Absolutely no energy at all. I was lucky if I got one thing done. So, it’s good to be motivated as I am to go the gym and it’s good to know that it’s okay when I can’t.
Acceptance is necessary in such cases or otherwise the guilt or whatever creeps in.
I’ve tidied up, started laundry, have pintos in the crock pot for dinner. I’m kinda going in spurts of energy and then sitting. A sure sign my body just isn’t up to something more strenuous. Although I tried to convince myself I could just go do weights:)…
It is amazingly beautiful outside. This is the time of year our yard looks amazing thanks to my daughter gardener and husband extraordinaire.
These are Cecil Brunner planted the first year we were here so 23 years ago. I’ll post a few more yard pictures. We own almost 3 acres here but much of it is sloped with oaks and pines.
My daughter has done an amazing job transforming the back area that is fenced. There’s many native plants and grasses. We have so many varieties of birds coming and migrating thru that it’s quite reassuring.
She’s working on the side area now and we’ve put in at least 3 new Iceland roses which are one of my favorites as the continuously bloom.
I decided to move some Fiesta ware and put the Melmac on the shelf for spring and summer. We used it the other night. I realized that it’s pretty scratched up( the large plates) so now I’m thinking maybe I’ll sell it in our local sell group. I’ll use it a few more times and then decide. This Mallo ware in robin egg blue and is somewhat collectible.
Well, time to do another round of something.
It is an absolutely beautiful day. Almost 70 degrees and just lovely.
We’ve had quite a few more walkers showing up in the early morning, kinda like ants waking up in spring. I recognize a few from last year. By 7 it’s fairly light out and it’s not really cold.
I’ve just puttered around today. Washed the kitchen floor and vacuumed( well, my husband did):) Then I worked on taxes and Turbo tax makes it so easy…
I started a pot roast in my new white LeCrueset. I love that pot. I’ve been making most of my stuff in it and it’s just great. The pot roast was the one I bought last week at the Farmers market and is local beef. Hopefully, it will be tasty. I’m making a nut loaf for the veggie as I froze a few individual ones at Thanksgiving. I need to do more of them as it is such a nice thing to just grab from the freezer.
I haven’t heard from my sister today but I did text her and I hope the ‘air leaking’ is improving. That’s from the surgery where the tubes are placed in the lungs and air can accumulate. It’s apparently painful so she is on pain killers.
With the weather so nice, it’s hard not to be thinking of getting the garden going. But it is a bit early. I think we will start some spinach and beets and lettuce though as it’s plenty fine for them.
Tomorrow is a gym day and then more of the same.
I washed the Poang chair cover yesterday and today I’ll do the Ikea couch covers. The sun is drying everything and saving me from using the dryer. It’s actually hot here although not unbearable, about 88 or so. We had a nice BBQ and I made some potato salad. I have lots of leftovers.
Today B leaves for Long Beach for a meeting for 4 days. We’ll hold down the fort here. My son finished his semester and so is able to do some extra things. He’s planning on doing a few flea markets to raise some extra money for his year at SFSU. I’m putting aside some stuff for him to sell. Plus he’s a bit of a hoarder so he has lots of old things he picks up at goodwill and he can try to sell that stuff. I actually have had some good stuff he could have sold but I had already put it in the Goodwill box. But I have a big stack of Life and I’m going to pick out some 1930’s ones that may sell. He has lots of Starwars, Star Trek, etc to sell. So hopefully he can make a couple of hundred. We haven’t heard back on his housing yet or his student loan stuff. I will try and have him call this week about the student loan as one of them we will be the co-signer on.
We are haveing great salads from the garden and should continue to for a few weeks. This is definitely lettuce time and then it’ll bolt. We also have some lovely radishes too.
I’ve been on a linen kick here since I mad the linen bread bags. Then I made linen tote bags and now I’m doing some pillow cases. I love linen and how it looks. I found a source that sells 120 wide for sheets so I’m considering that. It’s been fun to sew on my new machine and make a few usable things. I’m still planning on making the tent trailer new curtains but I may end up using up all the linen I had bought for that. It runs about $10 a yard so very affordable.
I went thru all my magazines and sorted them by decade. I used to have them all sorted this way even by month. But that’s when I had 40 bins worth. There’s still a lot there but I’m down to 6 small bins so not bad. I rearranged stuff on the shelves and there’s more space there too.
On the back wall of the other half of the barn, B is going to build shelves so my son can pack all his stuff he’s not taking to SF this fall. So that’s our next project for hopefully, next weekend. The bikes are hung up and it looks better that way too. We still have a lot of bins of camping stuff, life jackets etc, but that’s all stuff we need.
Today is a gym day and dinner is something simple, salad and?
This week I need to go to Costco and maybe Trader Joes. We’ll see.
We went to Costco yesterday and got a ton of stuff. A fire extinguisher we needed, some organic sheets ( yeah.. they were 29.95), lots of food stuff, coffee. I also went to the customer service desk and got a refund on the stuff that my husband bought 3 days before the coupon book came out. I didn’t know they did that. I was pretty impressed. I won’t need to go to Costco for a month at least. Unless I decide to go get veggies and fruit there.
It also wasn’t raining and that was a big plus. After putting the load away, I made us a brunch of scrambled eggs( our own) and avocado, tomatoes and cheese. Pretty tasty.
This has been a gloomy week with lots of rain and it looks like more is heading in today. Although right now its okay out, no rain. On Wednesday we head to Santa Barbara. B is working the co-ops and I’m going along since work pays for it all. We will pay for my portions of food but hotel and gas are covered. I’m looking forward to it. I love SB, even though I wouldn’t want to live there. It’s somewhat locked in by mountains and of course ridiculously expensive. But it’s great to visit and I love the beach trail. Since we’ve been there before we know a couple of great places to eat, plus there’s Trader Joes and Whole foods just to get some snacks and lunch stuff.
Our budget plans are going very well. Paying off the last bit on a CC is going very well. Actually, I way ahead of my schedule. But that may change or slow down since in the next month we need to get wood for the new garden beds and a truck- load of soil. So that will be an extra expense. But the garden gives us food and freezer stuff to so it’s a win.
I did a bunch of paperwork stuff this week. I needed to reapply for my LLS grant which covers my health insurance and copays to the doctor. Nothing diagnostic but it does help. Then I had to update my son’s FAFSA because he plans to go to San Francisco State university in the fall as a senior. I would like to see him get a grant for housing and tuition but we’ll see. They now do the year before ( 2015) and that was the year B sold stock so we had a larger gross amount. So that may impact it. I’m not sure if I could have done 2016 as that was substantially less. But it said taxes from 2015.
Today is a gym day and then I’m going to roast a chicken with a new recipe from William Sonoma that calls for oranges and red onion. Sounds good.
I cannot believe it. We’re on the patio getting ready to grill our beautiful organic steak I purchased from organic meats. And all of a sudden we hear a huge crack and see our neighbours’ tree fall hitting two other trees. There was NO WIND or anything. Boom! it just went. I totally freaked. I can not believe this could happen when there was not even a breeze. Fortunately, the tree fell away from our neighbor’s house. He is quite elderly, lives alone and has poor hearing. But he managed to come outside and check it out. We were already over there looking. This was not even a dead tree. Still green. Now I’m seriously thinking we’d better start budgeting for the next set of trees we want out. There’s about 3 that still are leaning in so….. Too crazy.
Yesterday was still a dex day but I went to town and then to the Koffee Klatch to catch up with everyone. It’s nice to get to socialize a little. I’m quite an introvert so, normally I don’t do things like this, but I’ve come to enjoy this group.
I also started a new level of minimalizing. I’m reading ‘The More with Less’ by Joshua Becker which I will review at a later time. But he does point out some things that spurred me into getting rid of old earrings and little stuff I never use. More stuff to goodwill. Plus getting rid of the whole set of dishes has opened shelves for pantry stuff to be more organized. I also got rid of some very old books(1940’s) that had been bought at a library sale and obviously no has cracked open. Plato? well, maybe in college, but certainly not now. So good. I can really see the results. I’m going to write a whole blog or series on this process soon.
Today, my daughter and I are going to a new nursery to get tomato plants and some other things. Should be fun. We’re eating lovely lettuce and peas from the garden right now.
B is going to rent a rototiller and do the garden and front lawn. Then we’ll have to buy a few yards of top soil. Since we’re in such a drought in california we’re not sure if we should plant more garden or some lawn. Our water bill is always high in the summer so I’m not sure.
I want to paint one more wall in the kitchen. This will be a first coat and then I think we’ll need to buy more paint. I really love the white. I didn’t think I would but I do . It’s serene and I like how it brightens everything up.
I’m off to work. I’ll be there alone today and I know I have at least 3 bins of transit. I may not get to shelving all that. It’s a little unusual to get that much so I’m thinking not a lot showed up the other day.
I’m still thinking about getting a monthly cleaner in but haven’t expored the cost. Maybe today I’ll go online and check. I think it would help me manage more easily. It seems even in the last 6 months I can’t do as much as I was, and I seem to not focus as well. Perhaps it’s the revlimid (chemo ) finally doing its thing. Also, I just seem to be having more physical issues. Oh well, I’m sure part of it is getting older and part dealing with the cancer side effects.
I have to plan dinners for the week, and budget money till next payday. But, I got gas and except for milk and a few things we have plenty of groceries.
I have a coupon for free smart chicken( the only chicken I’ll eat), at our Holiday market, so I’m going to get that after work and milk.