Friday things

I just got back from swimming and the pool was busy when I got there and then emptied out by 8am. Maybe I’ll consider going at this time. It could be that all the people that work have left. It’s definitely busier at 7am. Traffic was very heavy heading to Tahoe( East bound) but I just went slower than the crazy Bay area people in their Audis ,Teslas, and Lexus’.

I have a few chores to do this morning but nothing too major. I started doing our taxes and got them mostly done. I just need the interest from the mortgage statement so I’ll print that out this weekend. We use the standard deduction so it doesn’t really matter but it asks for it so I’ll do that. Our taxes are pretty simple so it didn’t take long. It looks like we will owe a very small amount!

Tonight we plan on ordering a pizza so that’ll be nice( expensive but nice). It’s nice to take a break from cooking.

Yesterday my son took the day off from work and we went over to Folsom to the outlet stores. Well, it was just the Levi store. I only wear Levi’s and wanted a new high rise pair. I was actually trying to get the original 501s but I would have needed to get a men’s size in order to fit and the clerk said probably they wouldn’t fit right so I got a different pair that still had buttons in the front. We’ll see how I like them. I do have trouble finding jeans that fit right and that’s how I ended up with Levis. I did order a pair of Old Navy jeans that were on sale but I’m not sure I’ll keep them after they get here( next week).

I started reading ‘ Still Life’ and couldn’t get into it. I guess some people really love it but I didn’t like the narrative, plus it was written in a weird way. Oh well, I have a bunch of books on hold at the library but nothing has come in yet.

Wednesday’s musings

Well, a disappointment with my labs. Kappa went up to 30.7 mg/L so a 3-point jump. And the ratio went up to 1.96mg/L from 1.76 so also a jump. I’m disappointed but such as it is.

The pool was busy but I did get a lane right away. It’s sort of hit-and-miss most mornings. But it’s still worth the effort. I went to the gym yesterday, which was pretty empty although I saw some new faces. Probably new years resolutions kicking in.

Today I’ve been playing around with a spreadsheet I downloaded for the budget. It’s taken me 6 different tries but I think I have it down and I like it as long as it works the way it’s supposed to. I bought it off Etsy on the recommendation of Minimom on Youtube. I do most of my budgeting in a notebook but I wanted to add something new.

After the pool, I went over to Winco for a few groceries. Honestly, you cannot beat the price of things there. It’s a bit of a learning curve because of the layout but I know it well now so I can just go to the areas of food I need. Their bulk area is amazing. Lots of bins of snacks, spices, grains, everything you could want bulk, even honey.

Today I need to vacuum and dust and then fall into a heap depressed about my light chains. It’ll take me a day to regroup.

Friday things

Another nice walk without being too cold. Sunrise is 7:20 am and was the same yesterday.

Today is just a pottering day and tidying things up. I’m not sure why things look more ‘untogether’ around Christmas. Maybe it’s the Christmas tree and the few decorations I have around although I even put a few away as I felt it was too much visually. Maybe it’s being stuck inside a lot with the rain and cold.

We’ve had fun with the ‘ugliest’ tree ornament game again. So far the pink sparkly dinosaur is winning but it’s a close runner-up with pineapple face. <>!!!!

I’m debating going to the pool tomorrow. I want to go but I’m not sure about the traffic on Christmas eve day. I guess I’ll wake up and see how I feel. I need to check the hours too as I think I saw something about that on the way out the other day but didn’t pay attention to it.

Tonight we’re ordering a pizza so I won’t have to cook. That’ll be nice.

My January budget will go from Dec.26 to January 25 approx. I do think the cash envelopes are helping with some things like Home Depot, bird/chicken food, groceries ( to some degree), and, misc. For now, I’m going to keep doing it. January will be a low spend month with no extras. I plan on holding off on Costco till we need coffee. The biggest change is going to be saving from SS the extra increase so we can use that for annual bills. Plus whatever other money we can put towards that fund from anything else.

Happy Hanukkah

We are atheists and I’m sure some people would be puzzled as to why we like to celebrate Hanukkah and Christmas. I think with Hanukkah, it is the meaning of the festival of lights and the beauty of the candles in a menorah. I think religious holidays can be secular if you enjoy the festivities and food etc but not the religious stuff.

Even though we are not Jewish, I really enjoy the beauty of the Festival of Lights. We’ll be lighting our candles tonight for the first night and exchange some little gifts. I always make latkes and we have homemade applesauce too. By the same token, as non-Christians, I still love the spirit of Christmas things, the tree, the lights, and the little decorations. So I do enjoy both without the religious attachment. Strange? maybe!!!

This morning started out with a walk and it was magical with the frosty fields and even frost on the Canada Geese’s back. Then back home to assemble the Christmas lasagna. I did two pans and they are now tucked into the freezer. Then my daughter peeled the potatoes for the latkes and they are hanging out in some water till it’s time to shred them. I plan on doing a spinach quiche too with some gruyere cheese.

This week I plan to swim and also go to the rec center. Hey, B checked with UHC and we can get a free gym membership at a local gym with just the cost of buying the key fob( it’s for the door when no one is there). So he’s going tomorrow to sign up and then I’m going to do it too. Since it’s free with our UHC health care we can take advantage of this. Then I can go when it’s too much to go down to Roseville. That’s exciting news at least.

I was reading an article about the 90/90 rule for decluttering. There are lots of these little hacks to help with decluttering but this one caught my attention. So if you’re looking to declutter things ask yourself:

” Have you used this in the last 90 days? And will you use it in the next 90 days”. it’s a great way to look at why we hold on to things. Exceptions are probably seasonal decor and such. I started going thru each room again with this in mind. I still feel the need to ‘par down to the essentials but keep the poetry”.

Frugal Friday

All things considered, it was a frugal week. I didn’t need to go to the store at all but B went to Safeway for a few things so I had him spend over $25 to get a turkey for $7.00. I might give this to the food bank since I plan on getting a Diestal from our market. They have a coupon for $15.00 off a Diestal so I put an order in for one of the petite turkeys which are 10-12 lbs. I did this last year and it worked out great for us.

The pumpkin puree ended up at 6 Qts which I thought was pretty good. I’m going to make a pie tomorrow to test it out. I also saw a recipe in NYT cooking for a pumpkin bisque that looked good. And I want to make pumpkin chocolate chip bread. I still have the other green pumpkin to bake and will do that this week. ( I’m assuming the insides are orange):)

The chickens haven’t been laying much so B put a light in their coop and now they are producing more. This time of year I use a lot of eggs in cooking.

Our freezer is pretty packed especially after going to Costco so I’m planning on doing some freezer meals for the week. So far I have shrimp scampi with pasta, bean burritos, and something with chicken, and I need to check what soups I have frozen too. I am going to put the sauerkraut I made in the refrigerator and I probably will do a Rueben-type sandwich this week( minus the meat).

With the extra Azure order, I’ll definitely be over our $800 food budget. But that’s okay as most of the order is pantry stuff and long-term food items.

All the monthly bills are in and I just submitted my LLS for November so that’ll be $175 for covering my UHC coverage.

I swam this morning and didn’t realize the pool was just opening at 7am so it was PACKED!! Not the way I like it at all but I shared a lane with a swimmer who wasn’t splashing and kicking wildly.:)

Tonight is pizza night and it’s just the 3 of us as our son is headed up to Mt Shasta City. We have the second half of the last Vera to watch on Brit Box. This is season 11. It’s good although predicatible.

Simple Sunday

HAPPY JUNETEENTH TOO!

HAPPY FATHER’S DAY TO ALL DAD’S OUT THERE, of kids, and furry kids too.

After the fiasco with the Ooni, yesterday we lit the pellets again and did get the temperature to 990 degrees. So that was working and probably what we did wrong was not wait long enough for the temperature and I think I need to scale the toppings way back. I did go and order Ooni pellets just to have the right specific ones they have.

This morning we had a nice walk with only one other person who has been showing up all week. He’s nice and seems to be enjoying walking. I’m planning on making a Father’s Day brunch of baked eggs with spinach in the individual lodge pans, bacon, both real and veggie, biscuits ,and homemade jam. I’m not sure what I’m planning for dinner but I might do Praeger burgers with corn, and I have some potatoes to use.

Our weather turns very hot by Wednesday, so today is probably a good day to BBQ and sit outside. When it’s 95 out it’s just too hot.

The pool was really nice yesterday because there were not a lot of swimmers. Almost everyone had their own lane which is rare. I enjoyed it immensely. After that, I went to the newish Trader Joe’s for a few things mainly wine, and bagels. I also got milk and juice and microgreens which I love on sandwiches. I was out of there in 15 minutes. We are planning Costco this week, but my son loves his bagels for breakfast.

This week is mellow, no appts or anything, just normal day to day stuff and a trip to Costco. I’m sure Costco will be pricey as so many prices have gone up. Even their bagels which used to be 5.99 are now 7.99. and that was 6 weeks ago. There’s not much you can do except try and hold to a budget and not freak out.

Flylady zone is the bedroom, if you follow the zones. She had a good description of decluttering the bedroom on her website which is really awful aesthetically. But the person who runs her website does a good job describing how to start under the bed, then to the right of the bed then left. And she always says, just do 15 minutes. I think Flylady works if you modify it to fit your circumstances.

Here’s a few pictures from the week, a funny video of Ciri the ‘mama kat’.

That’s a vulture sunning itself.

The Gus(ter)!!!!

She’s playing with a TOY mouse!!!

Frugal Friday

It was a frugal week overall. All of June’s bills are in for the month with the exception of the DMV for the truck which is due at the end of June. The DMV seems really high but maybe trucks cost more. We bought the truck a year ago so DMV fees were included and we didn’t probably notice.

This past week was 2 grocery shops. Winco for @ $100 and Costco for @$120. So not too bad. Most of those things will last the month of June and were some pantry refills. I plan on going to the store tomorrow for some camping food things we will need like half and half, some bananas, and at least one salad pack.

We’re leaving Monday and I don’t think were going to hit traffic going up to Tahoe as most of it will be coming down going west. Tahoe itself will probably be busy but we’re not planning on doing anything extra except a lunch out. We also need to go check the dump station in Zephyr Cove as Nevada Beach campground does not have a dump station. We’re only there 4 nights so it shouldn’t be a problem. Still, we will want to use a dump station before coming home.

Other expenses this week were the birthday present for my daughter, stuff from Home Depot, and some things from Amazon. I needed some black-out curtains to hang as the sun is pretty intense in the bedroom and the entryway this time of year. I also bought a Hario pour-over set for Rubi. We usually do the coffee press first thing but then after we walk we’ve felt like a coffee so this will give us 2 cups more. It’s a small pour-over carafe. Hario is supposed to be an excellent product so I’m excited to try it.

Tomorrow is a swim day and I’m hoping the pool is somewhat empty. The other day it was absolutely packed with people even waiting which does not happen very often. I also thought to go check out the gym over by the library for using weights. I’ve seen the building but haven’t gone in and I’m not sure what the set up is but it’s included in my monthly fee so it’s worth checking out.

I don’t have much on the schedule today except work out in the garden shed some. Tonight is pizza night and I think we’ll order one.

Post Script

After 6 months of glorious walking without the AH, he showed up yesterday. I almost fell over:(

So here’s the whole story, I decided a while ago that if he came back, which honestly I didn’t think was going to happen after 6 months, I would make an overture to him. So as he passed by I said ” Hey, Welcome back! Where’ve ya been??” Nicely… So he turns around( he a very dark sunglasses on so I couldn’t see his eyes) and looks at me and says ABSOLUTELY NOTHING and then turns and keeps walking. I was floored. I really was totally floored by this. But he was here this morning and we just ignored him and he looked the other way when he saw us. I’m convinced he has some sort of social issue or a mental issue or both.

Friday Things

The most exciting news is my labs came back and my kappa light chains actually went down slightly INTO THE NORMAL RANGE!!! I’m pretty shocked really. I don’t know if I can remember when I started going out of range( increasing) that it ever went down. Well, I’m thrilled for another month of emotional freedom.

I was going to skip swimming tomorrow since my new suit didn’t show up but decided to just go for it. My current suit is fairly chlorinated and not in good shape but I figure no one is there to look at me and when I get out I’ll put my towel over me. Hopefully, my suit shows up next week.

Today is a home day and just pottering around. My daily chores are done and I might do a quick vacuum. I made the pizza dough for tonight, so that’s done. I have a few new books to read from the library so that’ll be fun.

I’m working on a small embroidery project from Posie in Oregon. I bought a PDF of her March pattern in which all the proceeds were going to Ukraine. I like embroidering but my hands can only do so much until they start cramping. Not much going on in the decluttering world. I’m in a good place with what we have and use. There’s always more but then that takes another level of what I want to keep and what I want to pass on. I have a great vintage turquoise blue typewriter but it’s been shuffled around for years with me thinking ” oh it’ll be a great display”. But honestly, I probably won’t do that, and plus I don’t have any room for it on a shelf. So, I’ll put that aside for the hospice thrift store.

I’m beyond thrilled at Ketanji B. Jackson getting confirmed for the Supreme Court. At least some good news.

We spent @ $400. at Costco which included $50. for lawn fertilizer, beer( $29.00), and something else that was non-food?? Oh, I think it was AAA batteries( $18.00) and gallon freezer bags($ 15). So, I’d guestimate that @$300 was for food.

It feels like it’s been a spendy week. And of course, the tree is going to be $$$$. But what can you do? If we didn’t have the money, I guess we wouldn’t do it. We’ve been there so…Plus, everything seems so much more expensive.

Simple Sunday

A busy morning so far.

We walked and no one else showed up till just as we were done. So that was nice. Then I made some blueberry pancakes for breakfast with veggie sausage patties and eggs.

I wanted to do a quick kitchen reboot since I did that zone last week but it’s on the Flylady list for this week so I went ahead and just did a quick deeper clean up. But I did wash the floor on my hands and knees and got all the stuck -on things that the microfiber mop doesn’t catch. Then I did a bathroom clean up too.

I had some cottage cheese to use up so I made 2 cheese lasagna for the freezer. I had half a bag of shredded mozarella to use too. I used a jar of Rao sauce. I think for dinner I’ll do some of that Korean tofu that was so good with some ramen noodles.

The news about the mass shooting in Sacramento is very disturbing as the Golden 1 center is a hub of restaurants and bars and just people out at night. Why ?? And when we will have more gun control?. It’s so horrible to think of those 6 dead people and 10 injured and the trauma for everyone and the incredible sadness of the families. So awful.

I have my labs tomorrow and then swimming on Tuesday. the pool was very busy on Saturday which was a little unusual. Most Saturdays it’s full but not all the lanes are doubled up. Some people were waiting for lanes even which doesn’t happen very often. I’m hoping when the Roseville Aquatic center opens next month some of these swimmers will go there. I believe it is a bigger pool but I actually haven’t seen it.

Overall it should be a warm week weather wise and I’ll probably BBQ a couple of times.

Friday things

Yesterday we ventured out to Costco and it was fine. We were only among a handful of people wearing masks but heck, that’s ok. We spent $300 on food and $80 on nonfood. Overall, that’s a low $ trip at Costco for us. I still need a few extras and I think I’ll have Barclay do that next week after he gets his port flush. What I’d like to take advantage of is the Nasacort that is on sale. It’s 4 of them for $28. I pay $18 at the store for one. So that’s a big saving. Then I went over to Dicks’ sporting goods for earplugs. They didn’t have the Speedo ones so I got the TYR as a backup since last week I had to swim one time without earplugs because I thought I left them home. In actuality, they were stuck in my towel and when I lifted my towel they fell out. Oh well.

OMG. good news!! LLS just opened funding for Myeloma so I jumped on and submitted my application and was approved. They have it very streamlined and it was easy to do. I was definitely getting concerned about funding. LLS covers our medicare and UHC so it’s a good chunk of change a month.

Today I need to go drop off food at the food bank, Goodwill, check on my prescription at Bel-air, and then drop books off at the bookstore.

I plan to make pizza tonight but I’ll use a Trader Joe’s dough. I’m going to top with the fennel sausage I bought in Napa. I think I’m going to pull the Ooni out and use that so one with be cheese and the other will be the sausage.

Our weather has been spectacular and we ate dinner on the patio 2 nights in a row. Next week does look quite a bit cooler.

I’ve been reading the book ” High on the Hog” that the Netflix original was based on. I’d highly recommend it just for the history part. What we did to Africans is shameful. All that history SHOULD be taught in high schools so students can learn about ALL of our history, the good, the bad, and the ugly. NOT just what the good White people did. Arghhhh, don’t get me started.

We’re working in the garden areas and decided to buy 2 galvanized water troughs that people use for raised beds. B filled one with garden soil and is ready to plant. We bought some things at the nursery to plant like onions, and parsley, cilantro, chives. My daughter has lots of seeds to plant too. The garlic in the barrels we planted is doing great. We do have the front garden beds almost ready. Those will be things like chard, lettuce, kale, etc.

Everything is starting to pop with this warm weather. It’s been a very pretty spring.