Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Happily Ever After

When we moved last year we decided to find a new home for our two parakeets.  We knew there wasn't going to be an inch of space in my car (there wasn't) and truth be told, we never were really that attached to the birds. We got the first bird in 2009. As a birthday gift for DH. He was not working by then and home all day at his desk, so we thought it would give him some company. The bird was fine for a few years. We let him out of his cage semi-often and he'd fly and get some exercise and our yellow lab was the gentle giant with him, other then he'd try to lick the birdy to death, LOL. Then a few years later birdy started incessantly banging her beak in the cage. We tried moving her cage around to different spots, etc. Then we decided she must need a buddy, so we got the 2nd bird. All was great for a year or two and then she started banging again.  The other bird never got comfortable with us trying to sit on our finger or anything.

Anyhow - I put an ad on Craigslist and within hours got a message from this guy. He and his wife would like to take them, they had lots of birds and loved birds. So an hour later they came and picked them up. Within a few days he had texted me the the birds were doing great and a picture of them being free and out of cage (they let their birds be free around the house most of the time).

Every so often, he'll send me a text saying they are doing great, but I haven't received one for many months now. Each time I'd tell him  how happy I was the birds found such a great wonderful home. I figured he was done with the updates and I hadn't saved his cell# to ask him.

Yesterday I got the nicest surprise text. The birds (one male and one female) had bonded with other birds in their flock and the female bird (the one we got first in 2009) has had 3 babies! OMG! The picture of all of them is so great. I'm so glad they got such a great home (much better than ours LOL) with people who really love and take care of them so well.

The birdies got their happily ever after new home and so did we :)


Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Another budget reduction

I called the phone company to check and see if I could save any money by switching to one of their new bundle plans. Yep! I sure can. The customer service rep called me back with the details. There are two plans I can upgrade AND save money.

We are currently at 8mb internet speed (we had like 50mb at our old house) with dsl, and it's been working fine for us. I have no problems remoting in to work, nor do we have any problems streaming like Amazon movies or On Demand (which uses internet), though I've never tried both at same time (since I'm working LOL). Occasionally it's a bit slow, but we knew that would be the casemoving here, where fast internet isn't available, and it really hasn't bothered us at all.

We can now get up to 25mb! There is a also another plan that is 15mb, almost double the speed we currently have AND it's $25 a month cheaper than I'm currently paying for my phone/internet bundle!!! Woohooo!  I could still save $5 a month by taking the 25mb speed, but we really don't need it. The 15mb will be good.

I do have to get a new modem, but with their new bundle package plan it includes a new modem at no cost and they are waiving the service call fee for the tech to come out and set it up.  Plus, we will now get unlimited long distance calling. The plan we are on now only covers 600 minutes. Which is usually enough, but there are times DH has gone over that for the month. He does not like to talk for long periods of time on his cell phone (where long distance is free) as his hand starts cramping. He calls his dad like once a week and usually talks for an hour, plus occasional calls with some friends.

I think I'll take this $25 I am saving each month and set it aside until I have enough to pay off DH's new phone that we are being charged $27 a month for (24 months, no interest). That way it will be paid off in about half the time - 12 months instead of 24 months. When I have enough saved to equal what the balance is, I'll pay it off in one chunk, while I keep making the $27 a month extra that's included in our bill, until then.

I got another small savings on Sunday when I stopped at Staples to buy another cardboard tube for storing plans. It was $5.99. There was a person checking out in front of me and the cashier was asking if she had a Staples Rewards account. I know I do, I have a little paper "card" in my wallet, somewhere, so I had a minute to find it while I waited my turn. I almost didn't bother, thinking what's a small purchase like this matter anyway........after she applied my rewards code it dropped the price of the tube down to $2.29! Now I'm kicking myself for not taking the time to use it on the first 4 tubes DH and bought a couple of weeks ago. I always look at any savings I can get while shopping in the city as money towards the gas it cost me to drive the 110 miles round trip, so another unexpected $3.70 was good.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Weekend relaxing

Boy, I will sure be glad when all this smoke in the air is gone. I'm tired of watery eyes and even headaches some days.

Saturday morning DH wanted to drive out to the property, just to see what the hills across from us looked like in daytime after driving past that night before in the blaze.  Our neighbor lady was outside watering her lawn and we talked with her awhile. DH had the house plans in the car so he showed her the page that shows what the outside of the house will look like and also the drawing he did on the back of the last page, laying out the house and shop and driveways on the lot.

She gave me a good tip she just got from someone - the telephone/internet company has new bundles and new cheaper rates. She called and said she wanted to lower her bill and was there a cheaper plan she could go on. She's now saving $20 a month and got faster internet! I am calling this morning, for sure.

We didn't do much else on Saturday. I took a nap, read some more of the book I am reading. What a long book, but good. DH listened to a race online Saturday night. He kind of wanted to do the online pay per view live broadcast, but when he saw that it was $48 and only showed the main event (which if there were no yellow or red flags could literally be over in 10 minutes), not the races leading up to it, he said nope. Not worth the money and he wants to save for house stuff.

We're pretty much out of groceries to make dinners, so I went into the city yesterday morning so I could do a stock up. Besides being more expensive, the grocery store here in town just doesn't have meats I like. I've tried them. We like thin steaks, which they don't have and I've tried their chicken breasts twice and they are too thick and dry. First I stopped at the feed store for our dog food and bought 2 bags. Then to Target to pick up prescriptions and used some more of my Starbucks gift card balance to buy a white mocha, which I haven't had in what feels like forever. Then I stopped at Staples and picked DH up another tube for house and shop plans. Then I finally got to Walmart - where by then it was 10:30 and pretty crowded. I had hoped to get there a lot earlier. Oh well. I got all my stuff and loaded up the car and got back home at noon. Unloaded and put it all away and had a bit of lunch. I was going to take a nap, but then DH went outside to do some yard work, so I figured that is a good time to get the vacuuming done. Then I took a nap :)

I finally finished the book we will be discussing in book club at the end of this month. It was kind of an emotionally exhausting book and I was relieved to be done with it.

DH has been working on landscaping drawings/ideas, so that is keeping him busy. He likes to draw stuff out. Dinner last night was a couple of steaks, green beans and some melon. While he was drawing I had started watching a movie on Demand and about 20 minutes into he decided he wanted to watch it too, so I started it over and we watched that until 10pm and I went to bed.



Saturday, August 12, 2017

The view on the way home

Yesterday afternoon our friend texted DH with "we're getting Papa Murphy's pizzas - we can either bring them to your place,  or you come to our place.....or I guess neither" LOL. We ended up going to their place. Felt we needed to get out of the house, since we really didn't go anywhere all week. I have been craving pizza lately, so this was great.  DH brought our house (and landscape) plans and discussed with friend. We got a few ideas, too, from his building experience (and we are using same builder). Still just wish our friend didn't feel the need to drink so much. I'll bet he drank a 1/2 of a 5th of whiskey.

Driving home we were going the "back" way because they had been chip sealing on the freeway and DH didn't want to drive through it. The back way passes right by our property. As we got closer the sky got red and as we rounded a bend, and the direction we would be heading, it looked like we were going to drive right into the fire area!

Holy crap! Those fire guys DH talked to earlier in the day were right! It did get worse last night. Still not jumped over the freeway but almost right down to it.  All those white marks in the photos are ash debris falling in the air that showed up in the flash. They are also predicting that Sunday will be worse as the temp will be dropping about 20 degrees (finally!) , but with wind, I guess.

It was a very eerie feeling driving by all this. This fire has been a month now and apparently isn't over by a long shot. So far though they have managed to protect every home and building in the area of the fire, which is the main thing.

Friday, August 11, 2017

a new VPN - again

I'm happy the weekend is almost here for a couple of reasons. First, the usual - no work, haha! Second is we are supposed to have today and tomorrow in the 90's and starting Sunday we finally get down in to the 80's and even 70's next week. I am very tired of this hot weather and hopefully it is gone and done with for the summer. Now, if we could just get rid of all the smoke in the air.......

No plans this weekend. There is a "festival" in a very small town about 90 miles away that I think sounds fun. They have like 120 crafts and misc vendors. Maybe I can talk DH into going to it for something to do. Funny, the population of this little town is a little over 200.....and 120 vendors is almost as much as their whole population haha!

I went to log into my side job remotely and it wasn't working. Oh man, not this again. I emailed the guy at the office who is the go-between them and their IT company.  Turns out he moved my workstation and hadn't turned it back on, but once he did, I still couldn't get signed in.  It also turns out they have switched to yet another new IT company and the last one had set me up on this totally funky VPN system that I really don't like. I can't even get into my desktop full screen mode.

So, the new IT guy was awesome. Very quickly he had me set up with a normal VPN/remote connection (with a full screen of my desktop).  He also set up Outlook on my workstation desktop, which I have never had. I've always had to access my emails with them via Web Outlook. He also showed me how to set my emails up to my phone. It's all SO MUCH BETTER now.  And I can use my dual screens when remoted in and I can print to my home printer.  I'm just a happy camper all around. I emailed back the guy at the office this IT company is a keeper.

DH just went out to our property and at the end of our "lane" for our little subdivision was a bunch of fire management trucks. He texted me a picture and said it was a bunch of bigwigs...meeting there because they think the fire is going to jump the freeway and river over to our side. GRRR!  Not worried about our property, but the homes in the area, for sure.


Thursday, August 10, 2017

Water and scams

We will need to have a well dug on our property. And it needs to be done before the house building starts because it would not be good to start building a house and find out there is no water! While we are not concerned that would happen (the well logs in the area are fine), we still want it done before building.

We have heard people say two different costs.....a couple people (one in person and one online in a video) say $10 per foot to dig. We have a couple others tell us, no, it's more like $30-$35 per foot. Big difference. If it's $10 per foot - lets get it done now. Well logs and neighbors well indicate needing to drill down about 145 feet.

DH kept saying, should we just do it now? I'm like well, if it's $10 a foot, sure. If it's $35 a foot, not yet. We don't have that much - we just spent $2800 on the site work and he knows we had $5,000. $5000-2800 does not equal another $5000 or more.  Seriously, it gets so annoying sometime. After next paycheck next week, I'll be back up to $4000 saved for it.

So, I have mentioned more than once - well call and get a quote (we have two phone numbers for 2 companies recommended in the area). We can't budget until we know what it costs! Finally, yesterday he calls one of them (used by our property neighbors and by friend who built his house a couple years ago) and it's $36 per foot and they are 3 months out. Ok, that is very most likely doable to have that extra in 3 months. Then DH says, but what if they get an opening and say they can do it in a month? Sigh.....if we don't have the money to do it then, we don't have the money. Why is that so hard to understand? You'd just have to tell them anytime after such and such date...(I'm anticipating having enough by the end of Sept)

Then I told him to call the other number and get that quote too. It's a local guy (the other one is from the city) so it's possible he might be a bit cheaper. He said he will give the other guy a call, too.

I was reading a story on Facebook about a scam pulled on a 79 year old. The scammer called and told him his grandson was in jail in his local police station, gave a phone number to call back on that is in another state and had him buy $3000 worth of Best Buy gift cards, call the number back and give them the gift card codes. Who ever has gotten bailed out of jail using gift cards? and if someone is that far gone in their mind that they would fall for that, then hopefully there is a way to set up an elderly person's phone so that they can only take incoming calls from certain numbers programmed in (family, doctors, etc.). And if you are of sound mind enough to figure out how to buy $3000 in Best Buy gift cards you'd think you'd know this is a scam. Sorry.......I'm not being very empathetic, I guess. Anytime someone I do not know calls I am suspicious. How does that end up changing when you get older?


Wednesday, August 9, 2017

An uneventful week, so far

There is not much new and exciting going on this week at all. I'm really looking forward to next week, when the temps are supposed to be down in the 80's and even in the 70's one day. I'd like to finally get back to some normal weather. Rain would be so welcome - especially to help put out the fire and get rid of all the smoke in the air.

DH was going to get started building his boot bench, for the laundry room, today but since he needs to  put his saw table outside, and it's so smokey, he's decided to wait.

I went grocery shopping last Sunday for this weeks food. I think I might actually make it the whole week without needing to run to the store. I spent $70 on Sunday and I also spent $36 with a Walmart online order of some food, toothbrushes, etc.

My DD has been in a money saving mode lately with her shopping. She will send me messages that she is doing up a spreadsheet with all the stuff she regularly buys and the prices so she can watch for sales and get below those prices and stock up. She said she compared prices between Costco, where they like to shop and Target, where she shops a lot too and Target was better on a lot of her items. I asked her if she factored in the additional 5% savings using her Target card and she had not, so even better. I also reminded her that the grocery store she likes to shop at has an app where you can save even more and she had forgotten I used to use that, so she will download that to her phone. I told her they used to always have a free item each week, too.  She and her BF are also really good about not eating out very often. They always take their lunches to work. Usually she will make up a weeks worth on Sunday. Always healthy stuff too. Usually they take their breakfasts to work, since they both start so early. DD will make a weeks worth of breakfast burritos or they will do some overnight oatmeal. They cook most of their dinners at home, other than weekends, when they are usually out and about doing activities and going out with friends.

She was going to apply for a job that an acquaintance posted on Facebook, starting at $50k, but when she looked up the company it had a lot of bad reviews on the employment/salary site she was looking at, so she decided not to apply. Plus, it was for a job recruiter type of position and I told her I think she'd probably get pretty bored looking at resumes and interviewing all day every day.




Monday, August 7, 2017

Weekend wrap-up

Weekends go too darn fast, even with only working a half day on Friday. Saturday morning, we started to head out of town down the main street and see people sitting in lawn chairs in front of their houses - must be a parade happening in conjunction with the fair.  We got farther down a bit and decided to pull into a little gravel parking area in front of a business that isn't open on weekends. There were a couple others parked there, waiting, on a quad and a side by side. DH pulled in next to the side by side and asked the guy if he minded if he parked next to him and asked him questions about his side by side (something DH is considering buying one of these days). He was a nice older guy. The parade was due to start in about 10 minutes.

What an adorable little parade. Totally hokey, like the fair, but so cute. Glad we happened to be driving though just before and got a chance to see it.  As we got out to our property, the neighbor lady was just leaving (she was volunteering at the fair). She said she was running late because the dogs (they are taking care of their son's 2 dogs, as well as they have 4 of their own) ran off and she had to chase them through all the properties. Then she made some kind of comment we weren't sure how to take (you could tell she was in a hurry) - she said "one of these days you'll have to walk me through your property - it was kinda "icky" walking through it with all the dust. The dogs got so dirty".  We just kinda nodded and weren't sure what she meant and then she had to leave. Well....ya, it's now a construction site - it's going to be dusty and dirty. Don't take you dogs on it then....you have your 2 acres, the 2 acres you bought on the other side of you and 20 state acres on the other side of that!

But, as I got to thinking I have a feeling now that she meant she saw all of DH's little flags that denote the corners of house, garage, and shop, etc and meant she wanted him to walk her through and show her the layout. LOL. At least I hope that's what she meant and wasn't complaining because our lot is now full of dirt.

Speaking of neighbors - renter neighbor brought home his piece of crap mud truck and parked in on the trailer in his driveway again. Oh yay, we get to look at that junk again. He has tried to initiate conversation a few times with DH the past couple of weeks and DH isn't having any of it. Don't trust to talk to him one bit. DH will just answer his question of "how ya doing" with a "good" and that is all he'll give him, even if he tries to keep the conversation going. After he brought that piece of junk back last night DH was out in our front yard setting up the sprinkler and he says "how ya doing?" DH just said "good" and starts to walk toward our side yard sprinker and the guy holds his arms up and back and says "don't worry - I'm not going to start it" DH just looked at him and said "you aren't even supposed to have that parked here, and you know it" and then just walked away to our backyard. They both never not have a cigarette in their mouths and when we walk out our front door and they are outside, you can smell it from our porch. Gross. The wife hasn't been to work now in like a week, so who knows what's going on there...but poor guy can't have his girlfriend over at night then! She couldn't even get her lazy butt out of the house Friday or Saturday (fair was through Sat) and walk (or even drive) her 2 little kids over to the FREE fair.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

A fair and rodeo

We decided to wait and go to the fair in the evening, since the rodeo didn't start until 8pm. We knew the fair itself probably wouldn't be much and not much time necessary to look around, so we headed over there around 6pm or a little after (I had to cut DH's hair first).  We decided to just walk, as it was only about 3 or 4 blocks and a short cut through the grade school, down a path behind the high school football field and then out front of the high school is where the fair is set up.

On our way past the grade school, we see our neighbor couple from across the street at the grade school, they were putting together a shed for the school, so we stopped and DH helped a few minutes with that.

As expected the fair was not much at all, LOL. Not even any rides for the kids. We were hungry and there were at least several food booths, so we got some burgers and fries. DH had just met a guy the other day while he was at our property - the backhoe owner had sent this guy over to pick up his backhoe. He was standing near the picnic table we were eating at and DH said hello, so he sat down and chatted with us. Told us we'd better get our rodeo tickets bought, in case it sold out. Watched some kids roll around in those big bubble things. The exhibit in side one of the school buildings for art, photography, etc was closed. They had a big booth set up about fires and the fire fighting. We stopped to read an info board about good things to do around your house/property to prevent fire and there was an info sheet you could take with you. DH said it was good info to know and grabbed one. A young lady was manning the booth (she looked pretty bored as no one was visiting). We said hello and started chatting with her. Super cute young lady fire fighter. We talked with her about 15 minutes and then it was time to go over to the rodeo arena (we had picked reserved seats, only $1 more than the $11 general seats, LOL)

I LOVE RODEO's!! I haven't been since I was a kid. DH had never been to one. He loved it too. There is just something about cowboys I have always loved. (my real dad was a true cowboy) Nothing better than a guy in jeans, a western shirt, cowboy boots and a cowboy hat, in my opinion. And I just love seeing the young kids dressed up like that. So much fun. One of the ladies in my book club was sitting down the row from me, so we said hello.

The rodeo got over about 10:15 and we headed back home, back through the path behind the football field. A group of teenagers passed us and said they said hello. We were walking past the grade school and could see (in the dark) someone coming towards us on a quad (with a headlight) he waved and then turned and parked in front of one of the grade school doors and said something. We turned around and realized it was the guy from down the street that we got the wood from to make the sofa table. So we chatted with him a bit. He was in charge of getting ice for the beer garden, so he was apparently getting it from the grade school kitchen. LOL.

Love my small town life!

Friday, August 4, 2017

Let's get Friday morning done!

My Friday is not starting off that great. First off early this morning the fire smoke settled in town really heavy. Woke us up early, settled in my sinus's and by the time I did get up, I had a bit of a headache.  Then I log into work and get an email from the co-worker that cannot seem to manage the simplest of tasks. As usual, something is missing from her request for me to place a purchase order with one of our manufacturer's. Seriously, who gives a ship to address with no ship to company name? Then right after I emailed her back for that info, our email system went down for a bit.  I'm just glad it's only my half day Friday and the annoyances won't last all day :)

The little fair in town started up yesterday through tomorrow, so I think we'll go check it out this afternoon. I'm sure it won't be much, haha. It's like 3 blocks away, so we can walk over. Plus it's free. Unless we want to go to the rodeo tonight, that costs.

DH has been wanting nachos for dinner, but last time I tried making them I only had cheddar cheese and he wanted the more thicker melty type of cheese. I am out of ideas to make for dinner that doesn't involve turning the oven on. So, while at the grocery store yesterday I looked around and found some little cans of cheese dip by the chips. I just winged it with trying to make something resembling nachos. I browned some hamburger and green onions, added some taco seasoning, refried beans and a bit of water. Melted the cheese dip in a sauce pan. Put some chips down, layered some meat mixture then cheese sauce and repeated.  DH said it was great and loved the cheese sauce. Next time I'll add some other ingredients - regular onions and tomatoes diced up. I'd like some sour cream, too.

Our neighbor across from us was in and out of his garage this morning and had his old dog outside their yard. As soon as the old girl saw DH and our dogs outside this morning she came running across the field to join in on the fun. She's such a sweet old dog and wants to play fetch so bad, but she breaths like she's about to keel over that we only throw it a short way once or twice. Then DH walked her home...neighbor had gone inside to take a phone call and normally she would just stay in their yard, but now that she knows us, she just takes off to over here LOL. At least he knows where to find her.


Thursday, August 3, 2017

I'm out of titles :)

Well, I can't figure out how to set up my tax info in Google for the Adsense payment. When I logged in there was a notification that I needed to update my tax info for payment, so I did all that and kept trying to hit submit and it kept staying at the info entry page, saying I have not completed it correctly. I can't figure it out. Boo :(

DH spent yesterday morning at the property. When they moved dirt we did end up with some actual topsoil from the hill that got moved. That's a good thing - less we'll have to have brought in later. DH took his wheelbarrow and moved a bunch of it over to a strip of area next to neighbors side. It's going to be lawn eventually, so will need topsoil there.  We've been emailing with our neighbor at the property. In person he is super funny and he's the same way in emails too.

We haven't had book club the past 2 months. Hopefully we'll have it at the end of August. I'm just getting started on the book. It's actually our book from June........that I didn't end up reading. I tried to start it and just didn't like it, so I was relieved when the meeting got cancelled. I didn't realize they would just move that book to August for discussion. I'll give it another try and see if I can get into it.

In looking at our house plans closer, DH isn't happy with the roof line and dormers on part of it. He sent it to our brother in law (who frames houses) to get his input. He called back last night had some good thoughts and ideas on it. Then DH went back to the original plan he got the idea from (he used that, but tweaked it, then we had the guy do up the drawings for us) and that is pretty much what our brother in law said to do. So, most likely we'll be changing that. It doesn't change the floor plan at all - just how the roof line is and the dormers over the garage. DH is going to wait and talk to our builder (he's very busy right now) and see what he thinks. I told DH we're not having him make any changes until later....when everyone has had a chance to get all their suggestions/changes made and we can have him do it one last time - and only pay one more time! BIL is going to send DH a picture of a house he just did that looks like he is recommending, so we will get a better idea from that, too.

Still hot, hot, hot weather. Still smokey air. Every morning I look at the 10 day forecast, hoping that the newest 10th day brings some relief, LOL. Nope.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Not what was expected

One bad and one good:

DD found out her raise - even worse then she expected. A whopping $1422 a year. She's not pleased, to say the least, so finding a new, better paying, and more interesting job will be her new goal. And knowing her and how she works, it won't be long before she finds one. With her degree, experience under her belt now, and the salaries in her area for her qualifications, she should be making $45k a year easy, if not $50k.

We finally got the total bill on our site work on the property. We had hoped it would not be more than $3500 (it's kind of hard to estimate exact hours they would need to move dirt) but are very happy to find out it is $2800. Much better than the $5-6k DH's friend's brother in law's estimate, plus we used someone local here from town, which is good.

Found out yesterday one of our friends (from where we used to live) is in the hospital and it sounds pretty serious. Possible heart failure, fluid in his lungs and kidneys only working like 33%. Then he started slurring and mixing up his words, so possibly a stroke. Praying for him and his wife and 3 kids.

Last night we watched the 2 hour first episode of the show on Discovery about the Unabomber. Very good show, we both enjoyed it. Thankful for being able to pause live tv, LOL, as DH kept having to go out and move sprinklers around during it. I think it's like an 8 episode show, so we'll have to be sure to keep watching.

Not much going on for me. Just busy with work this week.  Trying to get my side job completely caught up. I got behind the month I couldn't access anything and then got behind when I had to re-create 2 months of work. Now I hear they are looking into purchasing a building for their office, rather than leasing, so I know they will need up to date financial reports at some point, so I'm trying to get behind the 8 ball this week.          

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Extra money

I opened my work emails to a nice little surprise this morning. A $200 bonus from my side job. It's the company's 9 year anniversary (and I have been with them since then) and they are giving all their people $200 cash gift, so I was told to just cut myself a check for that amount and cash it (since I can't be there). Nice! More into savings for future house stuff :)

I made that chicken and rice crockpot dinner for last night. I thought it was pretty awful, really. Kind of dry (you'd think soaking in cream soup and milk for hours it wouldn't have been). I figured DH would have hated it......he asked for seconds. LOL.

So the last 30 days of "extra" income has been pretty good. The unexpected $200 above, I finally got over the $100 level for GoogleAdSense and now should be getting a check for $108 (if I'm understanding how it works, still new at it), I earned $20.53 in Swagbucks in July and I don't know the total yet, but usually I earn about $25 cash back using my debit card. Oh, and I also got a big check for $1.32, a stock dividend from a few shares of stock I still own in a company I worked for many moons ago. Wish I could just get rid of the stock, but from what I checked into it would probably cost me more to sell them in fees than I would get out of them.  Total $330.57..........which is coincidentally just about the amount of that bedding set for the bear log bed that I would SO LOVE to have........ but for now, the money will just sit on my bank account.








Monday, July 31, 2017

Monday

My new blanket for the end of the guest bed arrived today and I'm very pleased with the color and it matching the pillows on the bed. I sent a photo to DD and told her it was regularly $120 at Kohl's and I got it for $20. She had the same exact thought I did when I saw the non-sale price: who in the heck would pay $120 for a blanket?!


Another 96 degree day. I finally looked up a recipe for chicken in my crockpot, so I can start using up some of this chicken in my freezer. I'm not turning my oven on 350 or 375 for 45 minutes to an hour to bake one of my regular chicken recipes.  The house gets way too hot and it's warm enough as it is.
Hopefully we like the recipe. It's most of the ingredients that I normally use. Chicken, rice, cream of mushroom soup, milk, etc.

I got a notice in the mail that I'm supposed to serve for jury duty in my old city.  Sorry, no can do. LOL. They had a place on their website where you could tell them why you need to be excused. DH got a notice for jury duty here - it's a YEAR long service here! He sent his card back in, but hasn't heard anymore. I guess there have been a few trials this month and a couple scheduled for next month. They all appear to be drug cases. Can you just see DH sitting on a drug trail?!! Guilty! He despises druggies and drug dealers.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

I am not ready for it to be Monday already. This hot weather stinks. Another week coming up in the high 90's. Every. Single. Day. I've lost track of how long we've had these temps - at least a month now. The wild fire just keeps getting worse and they just keep bringing more people in to work on it. I think they are over 400 now.  DH watched the video of the community meeting they had last night about the fire.  That sheriff is such a pompous ass. I can't see how anyone can stand him. Honestly, at this point I would not be surprised if it gets the 2 miles farther and across the river to our property. They as much said so in the meeting video. Just this afternoon it has increased quite a bit of area. You can see a huge cloud of smoke from town now.

Yesterday we headed out about 8am for a long drive and went and picked up our sets of house and shop plans from the guy who did them up for us. We met him at a car show he was participating in, so we got to chat with him, look at some nice cars and get our plans. On the way home we stopped in the city to go to Target for some groceries and such and got some lunch. Then we stopped at our friends house for about an hour.

This morning our friends met us out at our property because friend wanted to see the site work done and DH wanted his opinion on a couple of things. DH also took his long wheel tape measure and carefully walked down the bank from the top edge of our property to the river edge. He's just been curious all along exactly just how far down it is! 185 ft. Yep we are high bank. LOL  That's ok, no chance of ever flooding.  We also found out that lot 7 (we are lot 3) finally sold. I think that guy has been trying to sell it for like 2 years. It was the first lot we looked at (it's 3 acres, the rest are 2) but it's a wierd pie shaped lot and the builder said it's really only about 1/2 acre of usable/build-able area, plus from that little 1/2 acre it was set back far enough you couldn't see the river.  Apparently a young couple bought it, but have no idea if they are planning to build soon or what.


Saturday, July 29, 2017

A cleaning tip that actually worked

Well, what do you know. I actually found a cleaning tip that worked like they said it would!  This house has a white kitchen sink. I would never have a white one again. It has stains in the bottom that I have not been able to get out. That is until today and google

Here is a photo of my sink before


It's not the easiest to see the stains in this picture but it's the best I could get - but it had stains.

I sprinkled some dishwasher detergent and let sit a minute or so and then scrubbed a bit

 The detergent was left under the sink by the previous owner. She was moving into a camper trailer and I use dishwasher tabs, so it's still been sitting under the sink, just in case I ever ran out of tabs, I guess, haha.


Voila! Clean and nearly stain free, for the most part.  The instructions did say that if the stains were really bad, to do this as step 1. Step 2 is to then use a bleach spray and then use Bar Keepers Friend. Thankfully, the dish detergent did the trick, as that is the only item out of the 3 that I had.

Friday, July 28, 2017

TGIF

Good gravy! It's Friday already. Where did this week go? I slept terrible last night and I know I'll be ready for a nap this afternoon, which doesn't work too well when I need to be working. DH was having trouble sleeping too,after he came to bed, so he went and slept on the guest bed. I thought then I'd have a better night, but I woke up like every half hour, it seemed.

Payday is Monday, but since we have direct deposit the Monday checks hit my bank account on Saturday. I always like that, LOL. The end of  month is my favorite pay day because I also get paid from my side job.

I'm finally getting use out of my little Magic Bullet blender. I've been making us strawberry banana smoothies every day and the little thing works great and fast. According to a better diet for being "pre-diabetic" is more fruits and veggies, so we are working on the fruit part. That is easier - because they taste way better than veggies! Most dinners we have a veggie with it.....but with this ridiculous heat I haven't been cooking much of my regular meals. I've been trying to make salads with our meals. DH also likes cucumbers in his salad, so there's an extra veggie, too.

I'm having a good month using Swagbucks. My weekly online Walmart purchases (food and stuff with free 2 day shipping) were at a higher cash back percentage for awhile. I've landed some surveys and earned some bonus's from Swago and Spin and Win (which I wasn't aware of before). I earned double my next survey points and ended up with $3 from that survey. I also discovered I could get more points doing the Daily Discovers and have been working on making my daily points goals, so that I earn more bonus. I'm currently (this year) up to $110 with another $12 pending from purchases. I'm just looking at it like a little savings account and haven't cashed anything in yet.

99 to 102 degrees in the forecast for all next week. Good grief! Bring back the snow!


Thursday, July 27, 2017

Neighbor relief

Knock on wood/keeping fingers and toes crossed, for the most part, our neighbors are behaving. They've cleaned up as much as they are going to, it appears. While it's not perfect, it's much better and acceptable (enough).  For some reason,  he can never start anything until after 9:30pm or later (half the time he doesn't even get home until then). For example, the other night he decides to change the tires on his pick up at like 10pm.  We went out for dinner Monday night and when we got back he had moved his little car trailer from the side of the house to the front of his garage and they had their garage door open (couldn't tell if they were unloading something or loading) and appeared to be getting busy to work on something. About half hour later or so (we had gone out to water) the mayor (she also works for the sheriff dept) drove by and went to the other neighbors house for a visit. What do you know - they closed up the trailer and garage and went inside LOL.  She should visit our good neighbor more often, haha! It's also been nice that most weekends they are gone most of the weekend.

It will be interesting to see what they do when school starts up in another month. The boy will be in Kindergarten (I guess he was in pre-k last year) and there is still the 3 year old who'd need watching. The wife seems to working anywhere from 2-4 nights a week. When the wife is at work the dad sometimes takes the kids with him when he leaves at 6am, meets the mom in the city at 7am, where she is just getting off her night shift and she brings the kids back home with her. Somehow she sleeps during the day with 2 little kids awake.........Or, she will leave for work, pack a bag and take the kids and is gone for several days, so has the kids being watched probably by whoever she is staying with. Obviously neither of these situations is going to work when school starts. The guy did say they found his 18 year old daughter that moved out in the middle of the night the minute she turned 18 - she is at her mom's in the city.

We see no signs of them preparing to move.  Last week they hauled out a sofa bed or something. Sunday they came home with what looked like living room furniture, a sofa and chair that they moved in the house. The chatty 5 year old hasn't mentioned that they are moving again.

DH needed something to do today. He was so bored yesterday. He can't go out exploring the hills - too much fire danger time and it's too hot to do anything outside anyway. The wild fire is now within about 2 1/2 miles of our property and growing daily. About 50-60 homes closer to the fire have now been told to evacuate. There was also a notice that they will be monitoring the area near our property on a regular basis for any fire starts, as wind blows embers. There was another community meeting this morning that DH decided to go to. We haven't gone to any of the others, but since it's getting closer in, he wanted to attend and see what info they give. His neighbor buddy across the street should also be home today for his 2 weeks home from work, so that will give DH someone to chat with off and on.

DH got back as I was typing this. He decided not to go to the meeting, at least as long as it's not directly affecting our property. He stopped by for a visit with some people that live just down the road from our property. We had met them once, when we had brunch at our property neighbors house. They have a business at their property, do DH offered up his help with anything should the fire get that far. He said the wind has carried rock sized chunks of burned bark onto their property, but nothing burning. The site work guy still has his backhoe at our property (he's been too busy working the fire to come pick it up) sitting on the side/grassy area. DH moved it to the middle of the property where it's all cleared and just dirt. If the grass/trees caught fire at least his backhoe would be out of it directly.

DH emailed with our builder - just updating him that we got some site work done and the plan was still to try to get started next spring, if that works for him. He said he's never been so busy as he is this summer building houses, but has us "booked" for next spring/summer. He said he even bought a small camper trailer that he would like to stay in on our property (he lives about hour and 20 min away), while building, if that would be ok with us. DH said absolutely. Plus if he's basically living there during the week, that means he'll be very focused on getting our house done, I'd think.




Wednesday, July 26, 2017

The propane confusion

Ok, I think I have this propane account figured out.  The "Prepay Cap Contact" is an option I can choose, rather than the "auto-fill" option I am currently on. The Prepay cap contract states it is is for pre-purchasing your Winter propane (by August 31) and is for delivery between October 1st and March 31st (at a rate of $1.55/gal). Well, I just filled up my tank (at auto fill/low summer rate of $1.19/gal) and this will last me well past those winter months. I shouldn't need to get filled again until sometime next summer. I have already paid for my "winter" propane when I paid the bill that they gave me on the fill up a couple of weeks ago. The tank got filled last August, shortly before we moved in and lasted a year (we still had 30% and this would stay at that until we start turning the heat on - which isn't anytime this summer, that's for sure)

I see no need to sign up for this Prepay Cap contract and send them another $310 to just have sitting on my account as a credit for the next year.  If no gallons (or the 200 gallons they want me to pre-pay) are filled between Oct and next March, then I just end up with a credit on my account to be used later.  Whew! I'm glad I figured this out and didn't send $310! I was able to set up a login online to my account (it's a very low-tech website LOL) and see that it shows my balance owing on account as zero, so that also tells me this "contract" is just an option type of billing. They also have monthly budget billing. I would imagine many customers probably can't pay for a full years propane at one time, so they have these different options available. I know our renter neighbors had them come during the winter and add propane.

My free gift from those promo points through work arrived yesterday.  Looks like a nice dart board in a solid wood case. I also had about 400 points left, after choosing that, so I used them up to get some leftover containers, as I'm getting very low (don't know how they seem to disappear over the years) and that arrived too.

This weather just won't quit and the nearby wildfire just keeps getting larger and larger. Smoky air, too. There are about 50 homes in the area of the fire that are on alert to possibly evacuate. They didn't put out the fire right away because "they thought it was remote and wouldn't cause any problems". Well,  now it's like 2500 acres and ya..ya think?! of course it's a huge deal now. I don't get the thinking on it all. There are now over 300 people involved with dealing with it. In 9 days it has cost over 3 million dollars to fight this fire and they say they won't get it out, it will burn until the end of fire season now. Why not put it out when it was 3 acres and use that f-ing $3 million dollars for some other much needed things this county needs.

My DD cracks me up. She was apparently texting me last evening while I was outside watering my flowers. I get back inside to the first text is a picture of her (white!LOL) legs with a bunch of bug bites that she got over the weekend doing yardwork. Then a text asking me if she should be concerned with how red a few of them, close together, look. Then another text about them itching. Then another text "helloo??!! MomMD - what if I'm dying here and you aren't answering me?!"  I told her to put itch cream on them (she has been), take some benadryl, if she has time to sleep for awhile and maybe try a cold wash cloth to maybe help with the redness. Then I texted back "oh ya, you don't have any washcloths" (that drove me nuts when I've stayed with her) and she replied back "you bought me some last time you were here, remember?!" LOL

They are having some house guests for a week. They got to be good friends with the 2 girls who lived in the apartment next to them, when she was going to school. The girls just bought a house, but it won't close until mid-August and they don't want to pay another month's rent, so they are staying at DD's place next week, then house sitting somewhere for a week, and then a few more days back at DD's until their can move into their house.

She's also applied for a job with the (huge) company her boyfriend works for. Some kind of analyst position. She still hasn't gotten a raise yet and when she asked about it again, she was told it would be on her mid-August check, but her boss doesn't know how much. She did up her resume again and had me proof read it. I told her if I ever need a resume (knock on wood I do NOT) she's going to do it for me. Her resume was really good. Her BF showed it to his boss (who's been with the company like 30 years) and he was so impressed with her resume he said he'd hire her and told him to tell DD she could use him as a reference.  BF, based on the job "level" said it should be a $50-$60k a year job, so it would be a good salary increase for her. Hopefully she at least gets an interview, but if not, she's now got her resume all updated and can start applying for better jobs, as she sees them.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

This and That Tuesday

DH was on my nerves yesterday! mostly because he decided to camp out at his desk, in my office, most of the day, watching videos on his computer. One he was watching was our recent town council meeting. They mentioned some state notice about water rights that went out to all property owners and how everyone was confused and calling, even though it came with a pretty straightforward instructions/questionnaire type thing on if you needed to apply.  I went through the questionnaire steps and got to step 2 answer and it said no further action needed so I tossed it.  Seemed to have to do with irrigation rights or something and the use of over 35 gallons per minute (not us).

Anyhow DH got all in a little panic about what it might be and if it affects our land and ability to drill a water well. First off it's part of a subdivision. A well and a spot for the well has been approved/assigned. I  highly doubt this "water rights" thing has anything to do with it (rolling my eyes) but ok, I'll check. I found the notice and questionnaire online and printed it out so he could go through the question steps himself.  Then I found a nice little online brochure/pamphlet about water well drilling in our state for the prospective well owner. Pretty straightforward. It even says in bold words "be aware that most subdivisions that have been created in the past 2 decades have a specific well location where the well is required to be located".  You don't even need a permit to start drilling.

He's still unconvinced, so one of these days soon I will have to call the Dept of Nat. Resources and get the answer that yes, we can drill a well on the property we bought.

Over the weekend we had free premium movie channels (remember, I recently dropped HBO and Showtime) so I was happily able to watch the first 2 episodes of Game of Thrones. Of course they were so good...hopefully they'll be some other free way to watch in the near future, so I can get the rest of the season at some point.

Beings it was too hot to do anything outside we had to spend the weekend indoors so watched some movies. Some old one's we've seen before (like You've Got Mail and Fried Green Tomatoes) and a couple of new ones. Deepwater Horizon was ok, but seriously, can't they just hold the camera on a scene for more than a split second? Drives DH nuts to try to watch a movie where the camera shot is changing every second. Plus we had the volume up really loud and still had trouble hearing what was being said....not sure if we are just getting that old or what, LOL, but it seemed like they talked so fast/mumbled or in the Louisiana accents we just weren't catching it all.

We also watched Sea of Trees, which was on Amazon Prime (I share with DD). Kind of a depressing movie that took me awhile to get into. I almost changed it to watch something else.

The site work on our property got done last Wednesday, but we haven't received the bill for it yet. The guy has been busy with the forest fire nearby (he helps cut in roads into the fire) so he hasn't been able to get us the bill yet. I'd like to know for sure how much it ended up being! I don't like not knowing. Based on the time it took them DH is estimating $3000 at the most - this is almost half what another guy (brother in law of our friend) quoted him to do it.

Part of the driveway cut in ends up with a banked area near the house, which DH wants to put in a rock wall. Friday afternoon we drove to another town (it was about a 45 minute drive) to check out a rock landscaping place. Beautiful rocks, but way too pricey! $200 a ton! The estimate to rock what we'd need would be like $8,000- $10,000. Not happening.


Plus, DH had in mind something a bit more "natural" looking than this stuff, not so blocky looking. Though it did give us some ideas that we might like the flat rock for our back patio.  DH actually found what he was looking for near town, yesterday, he's just not sure if they have enough of it. He didn't get to talk to anyone at the little rock quarry (again, another one out helping with the wild fire) but I'm sure it's probably at least 75% cheaper, plus it's nearby and won't cost and arm and a leg to have delivered.


We contacted the engineer guy who drew up our house plans last Spring. We needed the house plans flipped (because of where we have to put our drainfield) and a couple of changed DH wanted on the shop. Plus, he's now doing the actual set of working plans for us. Turns out he had a car in the town car show we went to in early June and we didn't even know it was him. LOL. He lives in the city for us to pick them up from him. Since we are in no hurry to get them, he mentioned he will be at another car show south of the city about 30 miles on Saturday, so we might just take the drive there Saturday morning, pick up the plans and take in a car show.

Monday, July 24, 2017

New week



Not a whole heck of a lot going on around here. Just trying to get through another week of temps in 90’s and near 100 some days. No end in sight on it yet, either for the 10 day forecast. DH says if we wanted this kind of heat and summer we could’ve moved near his best buddy, who lives in Texas now!

There are a couple of wildfires nearby for the past week, growing in size by the day, even though crews are working them. First they had a temporary set up for the crews in the grade school, but now it’s all at a big tent city set up in a field about 10 miles from here, across from the fire that is up in the mountains. Smokey smelling near our property, but it’s blowing the opposite direction from town, so we are not smelling it much. So far the big fire is about 2000 acres.  I think they took care of the other one, for the most part.

Did I mention about DH getting his Rosuvastatin (Crestor) prescription and feeling sick every day he was taking it? I had called the pharmacist at CVS in the city to find out the mfg of what they use. Then I called the pharmacist here in town and it was different. Both pharmacists say it’s possible that with different mfg’s they use different inert ingredients and that could be causing this change. He stopped taking it last week and immediately felt better. The pharmacist here is town had mentioned he might be able to get it from the same mfg CVS uses, so I called him up this morning and he said he could and will have it in tomorrow.  Hopefully this will take care of the problem. 

I’m so confused about our propane billing. We are on an “auto-fill” type of account, which I took to mean they monitor and refill when it gets down. But there was a notice in the paper about the “summer fill” and to call by 7/5 to get in on the summer fill appointments. I called to get it all clarified. She explained we get the summer rate at any time during the year that our tank falls down to like 25% and they come fill on their schedule. She also mentioned a bill just got mailed for the annual $75 tank rental. I said ok, I understand it now, I just wanted to figure it out and we were still at about 30% left.  She then said since we were down to 30% she’d let the delivery guy know.  I got bill in the mail the next day for the $75 and a few days later the guy came and filled up and gave is a printout type of bill for 200 gallons at 1.19/gallon and an envelope to mail it in. So, I mailed a check for $313.  Saturday I get an invoice in the mail for a “pre-pay cap contract” for 200 gallons at $1.55. I think this is in addition to the $313 I just paid? The fine print says “contracted gallons will be filled from October 1, 2017 – March 31, 2018.  I’m so confused on how this all works! So, I’m now assuming if I send in a check for $310.00 that covers our next fill up and if we only need another 200 gallons next summer, I won’t get a bill for that fill up? I’ll just pay another “prepay” amount next July/August? I guess I'll have to call for yet another explanation of how this all works.

Friday, July 21, 2017

More online shopping

As part of my deal in buying the bar stools from Kohl's last week, I received $20 in Kohl's cash, but could not use it until yesterday. I've hardly been shopping online with Kohl's anymore because of the minimum order amount to get free shipping is usually more than what I'm looking to buy (and I just haven't been buying "stuff" for the most part). But this month is a free shipping code (FREE4JULY, when you use your Kohl's charge card) and my Kohl's cash became available to use today. Plus the 30% off code (BBQ30 - again have to use your Kohl's card) is still good to use.

I've been wanting a "burnt orange" colored blanket to go on the end of my guest bed and matching the burnt orange throw pillows (got cheap at Walmart awhile back - like 2 for $15). In my "new house stuff" budget, I had budgeted wanting to pay no more than $30 for the blanket. I haven't found anything the right color or that cheap yet. Blankets can be pricey!

But Kohl's has one on sale for $60 (reg $120 - good grief!), the color is "Spice" (and I'm hoping it matches well enough with the pillows). Because Kohl's let's you stack up to 4 coupon codes, I was also able to take advantage of the $10 off $50 home purchase coupon code, as well. I noted in my budget/paycheck for the end of this month to log in and pay off the Kohl's balance I charged on the card.

$10 off, then $20 Kohl's cash off, then 30% off the remaining balance brought it down to $20.99 and also free shipping. I also went through Swagbucks site and got another .84 cents cash back (4%). I'm pleased to get another item on my "house stuff list" that is under my budgeted amount by 33%.

One set of the bar stools showed up already yesterday. We haven't opened up the box yet, but we will to make sure it's all there and nothing broken. The funny FedEx guy told DH "it's official - you are regular-regular's now, instead of semi-regulars" LOL. I laughed and told DH that means there are other people who order more than me, haha!




Thursday, July 20, 2017

Cheers

As we spend more time around DH's friend who lives in the area, we are coming to realize he may have a drinking problem. Not that we ever see him really drunk, but just that he always seems to have to drink - no matter what we are doing or time of day, it seems. We go to a car show in the later morning and by noon he's having some beer coolers he brought in a cooler in his trunk. We stop by for a visit or dinner at their house and he's always having a drink. We met them last Saturday at the restaurant and from photos his wife put on Instagram he was drinking as they floated the river and then he had a drink at the restaurant. They go camping on weekends a couple times a month and I know they drink the whole weekend.

I'm sure that is most likely causing a lot of the marriage/family problems he is having. How could it not? She seems to drink too, but since we don't spend quite as much time around her, I'm not sure how much. I know if we are having dinner with them she will have a drink and she will  post on Facebook going out for drinks with her girlfriends quite often.


It just seems like a person should be able to go do something for several hours in the morning/middle of the day and not have to drink alcohol. Plus then he drives! DH has said to him that he's really putting his job on the line (he drives a truck for a living) to lose his CDL license if he ever got a DUI. Many people in this part of the country still do a lot of drinking and driving, it appears.

I'm pretty sure he comes home from work every day and have drinks. (I've seen their booze cabinet!) Of course, who then would feel like dealing with problems/family when you've had a few......

I just find it sad that he feels he needs that so much.  There should be more to life than always have to have a drink every day.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Just watching the progress

Not much has been going on here, other than DH has been spending quite a bit of the last few days at the property. The guy should be done by mid day today. When he got done yesterday he told DH he just had a couple more hours of work.  It appears we will come in at or maybe even under budget with this project, which is very nice.

This picture was taken standing at what will be the master bathroom tub window, looking out toward front of property/road
Of course it will look different with landscaping and lawn. That bank area to the right will be a rockery type wall. If we have some money left over from this project, DH might get started on that project.

With the extremely hot weather there was some lightning Sunday night causing some fires in the area. We just have a volunteer fire dept so they have been busy up in the hills. They have headquartered and the 2 helicopters come in at the little airport a few miles from us. On Monday, after I got done working, as we were going out to the property so I could see it, we stopped in town at the grocery store and bought some ice cream sandwiches and put in a cooler of ice. We stopped at the little airstrip and dropped them off to the fire fighter guys. They seemed appreciative of the gesture and I'm sure was nice to have something cold to snack on.

It's been really nice having DH out of the house for part of the days this week. The weather is cooling down a little bit. 90 and low 90', though I'd much prefer about 10 to 15 degrees cooler!

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Let the work commence

Sunday was more of a rest/take it easy day. Since the weather was still on the cool side in the morning, DH went out and mowed the lawn while I dusted and vacuumed inside. Later in the afternoon the guy who is doing our site work called and was taking his backhoe out there to drop off and wanted to see if DH could meet him out there again to go over some details. The guy decided to start work on it and end up doing 2-3 hours of work getting some dirt moved and a small grove of trees removed. DH took pics and it's starting to look a bit different already!

While DH was gone I watched a movie on Amazon. Tom Hanks A Hologram for the King. I'd never heard of it before. It was an ok movie. I enjoyed the taxi driver's humor. I can't imagine how that country (Saudi Arabia) gets anything done with the way they do business. LOL.

Here's a picture I took on Saturday, from the front of property, showing the trees that were going to have to go (because that's where our driveway and house is going). We were able to leave the pine tree in front and I think the one right behind the grove of trees, not sure about the pine tree right next to the grove. I know DH was going to try to keep it. I think the driveway will bend around in between the two pines.



Here are a couple of pictures I took yesterday. That clear spot was where that group of trees had been and the other is our driveway rough cut in



The guy told DH "you watch, now that this will be all cleared and ready for building, someone will offer to buy it from you". DH was like ? why is that? He said it happens all the time. Most people see property that needs work and can't envision how it would look once all the dirt is moved or fill brought in, so they don't want the property. But once it's been prepped then they are like "oh, that's a great piece of property!" LOL

DH was stressing over the county drawings that show where the drain field and well are supposed to go. They have the drainfield right where just about anyone building here would decide to put the house. It's back up away from the bank edge (they'd prefer you didn't build right on the edge) and no one would want to put their house down in the low spot next to the road! Obviously you still want to see the river. Plus they they have the drainfield in the highest spot of the property. DH went and talked to the county planner guy. He agrees it doesn't seem to make sense and would run out there to take a look at it in person with DH. The county can authorize to move the drainfield for us, but if the drainfield gets moved the well will have to be moved and apparently that takes more bureaucracy and will probably cost us about $700. Whatever, just figure it all out. At the high spot we'd have to put in a pump type septic, rather than gravity fed, so we'd eat up that $700 and more by having to have a more expensive septic system.

The planner went out there mid day yesterday and agreed with DH. Said the way DEQ had drawn this out what the stupidest he'd ever seen LOL. He also said don't worry about moving the well. He'd approve it and we don't have to pay the extra $700. 

It's noisy and dusty and we got the perfect days to cause as minimal disruption to our neighbors as possible - they are out of town for at least a few days.

Speaking of neighbors. Our renter neighbor must be having an affair, but I do not know how his wife could not know. The kids know she's there and this is of course a very gossipy small town. DH says maybe she doesn't care. That woman with the two little ones, who always shows up at night (great mother to haul two babies around at 10 or 11pm and then back into her car at 2am or whenever she leaves), when wife is at work.....well, wife went to work Saturday evening (it appears she usually works 3-4 nights in a row and stays in the city). Girlfriend shows up later and spends the night. Sunday he, his 2 kids, the girlfriend and her two kids (a baby and approx 4 year old) all leave in his truck Sunday morning. Gone all day and get back early evening. About half hour later she loads up her kids in her car and DH had just gone outside to move a sprinkler and sees the guy leaned over at her car window - giving her a hug and a kiss.  Wife gets home from work the next morning. What a bunch of whackos. They give me the creeps just having them next door. LOL.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Metal detecting

It turned out to be kind of an exhausting, too hot, day Saturday. DH wanted to go back out to our property, with the metal detector he borrowed, and see if he could locate the 2 front property pins. We got out there about 9am, so the weather wasn't too warm. No luck getting the detector to beep where he thought the pins should be. He went to the next property over and found theirs. The detector wasn't a very expensive one, so it wasn't going to read down very far at all, we determined. Apparently just best used to find something you lost in the grass/ground or maybe just under the surface.

Then he took his weed eater out of the back of the car and cut the grass down so he could get the detector closer to the ground. Still no luck. We had some measurements of the width of properties and from the one we found on far side of neighboring lot, we took his long tape measure and marked out where the corner of our property should be and then again across our property (168 ft). Both spots were where DH thought the pins should be. They must have gotten buried (or taken out) when the road and utilities were put in, he guessed. He started digging on the corner between us and the neighbors that have a house there. This dirt was definitely fill and not native, so he kept digging and was down almost 2 feet and did see a piece of the broken off marker stick that had been in the ground. Neighbor got home as we were doing this and came out to chat with us. Love that guy. By then the weather was getting pretty warm. We chatted with him quite awhile and then he headed back toward his house. DH dug one more shovel full and finally found the pin! Found it! He yelled over to neighbor. So then neighbor came back over and DH told him how he was going to put a piece of plastic pipe down in the hole, over the pin and then fill it back up and we'd always have an easy way to locate it.

DH sent me back home to pick up the pipe he had. He hadn't been expecting to have to dig 2 feet down and hadn't brought that with him. I grabbed the pipe, made a quick lunch and brought another water and pop to him. By then it was hot out and he drank those right down and I finished the water I had left for me. Then the guy who let us borrow the metal detector was driving by and saw us, so of course he had to stop by and chat. That was probably an hour of getting nothing done. And getting hotter out! It was 90 by then. This guy used to actually own this 15 acre lot way back and sold it (to put his daughter thru college) and then it got subdivided and developed.

After he left, DH measured across the found pin 168 ft and quickly found the other pin, it was just a few inches under. Of course right where we had been looking all along. Then he wanted to do some measurements and marking with construction spray paint, for the site work guys. So now they'd know exactly where the edge of shop and house would be, where driveway should be, etc. By then I was getting way too hot and no water left. Neighbor guy had said feel free to come over and use the bathroom or get water if needed, so when we got finished we knocked on his door (his wife is out of town) to beg for some water!  It was so nice and cool in his house as I went back in with him to get some glasses with ice and water.

As we stood outside talking to him he left their door open and one of our dogs decided this was the best spot to be!


We got home around 2:30 (what a long time out there!) and were both exhausted from being out in the heat. I went to take a nap and DH was fiddling around with his drawings of the property. Our friends texted him that they were floating the river and their stop point was a restaurant about halfway between where they live and where we live and did we want to meet them there for dinner around 5:30. That sounded good and I'd still get my nap in. I finally doze off and the dang doorbell rings and woke me up. It was some guys selling satellite and internet service. So much for my nap.

We hadn't been to this restaurant yet. We both ordered the beer battered fish and chips and it was delicious. We'll definitely go there to eat again, it's only about a 15-20 minute drive away. They also had some live music, which was good to listen to, though a bit loud in trying to have dinner conversations.

Got home around 8:30 and as we are getting close to town we notice the road is wet! It  had rained! Finally! We were both tired and really didn't feel like having to do our nightly watering of the lawn, shrubs and flowers. It even rained a little more after we got home and the temp had gone down to 73 (the night before at this time the temp was still 98). It's cooled down to 85 the last couple of days. I'll take that over the 103 it was on Friday, that's for sure.

Friday, July 14, 2017

I drive myself nuts

One of the things I often times dislike about myself is my ability to make a decisions when it comes to purchases. I over think them to death - especially with trying to get the best deal. Then when I do come across a great deal, I question if it's the style or whatever that I really want, yada, yada, yada.

So, I've been thinking it would be smart of me to keep my eye out for great deals on things we would need for the new house. I said to DH that I sure wish we had some storage space because I'd like to spend the next year buying things for the new house if I come across a really good deal (like I did on the xmas tree awhile back) and he said to just buy the stuff - he will make room (he's a master organizer). We also have some storage room in the crawl space under the house we could use (and it was like 50 degrees down there all winter) Like we will need some bar stools for the bar counter between kitchen and dining room. Bar stools seem to run at least $75 for good ones (and of course on up in price). I really don't even know for sure what style I want......or what height I will end up needing - bar stool height or counter height.



But, I came across a really good deal through Kohl's - making the bar stools $28 ea, plus I'd get 4% in Swagbucks and 1% in debit card rewards back, making them $26.60 ea.  I like the bar stools just fine. They have wood, metal and a neutral color seat cushion. They are regularly priced $150 for a set of 2 (I will need 4) on sale for $90, plus the coupons, etc. The reviews are good on them. They would look perfectly fine in my new home.

We aren't going to have a huge budget to furnish this place. I want to bargain shop on anything I can. I even have a list I  made of each room and stuff I will need for it and estimated costs. This purchase would save me $150 from what I budgeted ($300 for 4 bar stools).

But I've kinda had in mind something else....bar stools a bit more rustic - all wood and with no backs. They have those, but at twice the price as the great deal on the one's with the backs. Plus the one's with the backs are adjustable height when you put them together. And since I don't know yet if my island bar seating area will end up counter or bar height, this stool would be good.

But if I bought a different one and went ahead and got bar height, I could always return them if my mind changed down the road. I looked up Kohl's return policy and it says they can go back 36 months and credit your Kohl's card.

So while I typed this, looked at the different bar stools some more, typed this some more, went to dinner (cuz it's 103 freaking degrees out and I'm not cooking!), compared stools some more, and then back here typing this......I'm wearing myself out! Now I'm kind of liking the ones with the back better. Ok, I've decided...... I think........I'll get the cheaper/best deal ones. They'll be kept in a box until we get our house built and if I change my mind I can return and exchange for something else, right?!

 Besides, $26 for some nice bar stools is a darn good deal.

Good lord - and I'm going to put myself through all this for just about every purchase? EEK! Oh, and the coffee maker I was thinking about with the  points promo through work, where I would get it free? Well, I think I've changed my mind altogether again. One of the items to choose is a nice wood cased dart board. We would love to have one of those in our bonus room over the garage. DH thought it was a good idea to get, too. Something for the house we could use  - and free! I'm not a major coffee drinker and if/when my Keurig (I had rec'd as a gift) dies I'll get something cheaper. I think this points promo deal through work is an annual thing so maybe next year I'll get some more points to get a coffee maker.