Friday, March 31, 2023

Firestick Friday

It sounds like my boss offered the accounting assistant job to the young college student and he has accepted. She just sent me a screenshot of his spring quarter class schedule, so I assume that means we will be working around that, LOL. All her email said is "something else to visit about" and I just replied back, "so we have a new employee? :)" I'm going to have to figure out the best way to train someone remotely, LOL. Lots of screen sharing I guess while we are on Teams.  

My mom called twice yesterday. My phone rang in the afternoon with a number I didn't recognize, but from the city mom's in, so I answered it. It was her and they had dialed for her using one of their office phones, I guess. We just chatted for a minute or two. She seemed good. Then she called me from her phone at 6pm. I was out in the shop brushing trim with poly so I missed the call and she left a voicemail and I called her back about 10 minutes later. She had no memory of us talking a few hours earlier. I do like that the staff will take the time to call me for her from their phone to let her chat and say hello. She also sounded happy and good at 6pm, too. No complaints.

I'm thankful it's Friday and pay day. I'm caught up with all my current shows I'm watching, so back to watching episodes of Doc Martin. My new Firsestick is supposed to come today, so I can get that new one hooked up and see how it goes. 

I'm still keeping track on a spreadsheet of my misc monthly expenses. Food (and personal care and cleaning supplies) this month was $536. Feb was $641 and Jan was $454. I budget $600/mo so far I'm averaging $544 a month. Overall, we spent less in March than Jan and Feb (not counting the closet and loft project). Eating out in March was only $56, whereas in Jan and Feb it was around $150. I spent $39 on the cat this month for treats, litter, and flea treatment. April is the time to start applying that again and ticks are returning. Each month we have been consistent for with gas for the vehicles at around $150-$160 month. Again, we had quite a few more trips to the city with my 3 medical appointments during March. Plus we had several trips (20 miles round trip) into town to the lumber and hardware stores.

DH needs some new socks. I get them from Amazon. I have ordered them like 3 times in the past and seems to be about every 15 months or so. Inflation...from $9.99 to 12.99 to 14.99 price now. 

For the closets the only thing I think I have left to do is add one more coat of poly to the trim and I will do that after I'm done working today. It shouldn't take me more than a half hour. My new wood hampers for each closet arrived yesterday and dh got those put together. They look nice and I think they will go good with the closets. 

ok, my new Firestick just arrived - wish me luck!

Thursday, March 30, 2023

Firestick - again

The other day, after my firestick not working yet again, I decided to just order a new one. It was $40, but after I clicked on add to cart, it popped up with 2 Amazon promotions going on for it, one for $20 off and one for $5 off, bringing the cost down to $15. Then I also clicked on their "trade in" old device and after I send that one back in, I should get another $8 back for that, I think. Well, shoot - can't beat $7 for a Firestick! I just gotta hope now that a new one will work. We have an old one out on the tv in the shop and it seems to work fine, so I'm not really sure why this one on our house tv stopped working. I hope it's just the device and not something wrong with my tv connection for plugging it in. I really don't want to have to replace the tv....only because it would be a pain in the butt to take down and put up a new one over the fireplace, LOL. But, I guess if a new tv is needed, then of course it will be a smart tv and no firestick will be needed.

My mom actually called me on her own, no help from staff, yesterday afternoon at 4pm. She knew it was somewhat close to dinner time as she kept saying "I don't want to keep you long, you are probably making dinner". I can tell when one of the staff helps her dial because after I answer you can hear them and/or her say something and then they leave and this time it was just her. She even remembered dh's name this time....but then said it was almost Christmas, LOL. But, overall she sounded really good still and was happy.

It sounds like my boss may have found someone for the accounting assistant position we want to add. I don't think she had posted the job yet, but through networking had received an email from a colleague about a young man, in college, looking for a job. It does not sound like he'd probably be more than a year or two at our position, but she seems ok with that. He's studying to be a lawyer and will be in law school in about a year and a half. He went through a program my company is involved in to help disadvantaged high school students gain some perspective and experience working in our field. Inspire them to push on with their education, whether it be at college or trade school. I think she will be setting up an interview with him.

Gosh, March is almost over already.  We're having rain this morning, instead of snow. DH has twice lately been off on what day of the week it is. I do that sometimes, when I very first am waking up, but once I fully wake up, I know what day it is. He's going all day thinking it's a certain day. That's a bit concerning. But on the other hand, he's not doing stuff on the computer/work all day like I am, to see things with the day of the week on it. It still seems like he should be able to figure it out early in the day. Plus, with our iphones, every time you open the home screen it says the day of the week, with the date. Not to mention, if he thought all day yesterday was Thursday, then why didn't he do laundry? - he always does laundry on Thursdays (and Sundays). 

It's taking me all morning to get this post done! So, I guess I'll leave it at this for now.

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Stuff getting done

I forgot to add yesterday that the hvac guy did come on Monday and got our issue fixed, finally. We now have zones again and can keep our closed bonus room down at 64, my office upstairs at 68 and the main floor downstairs we usually put at 69 all day. Since I am up first and upstairs in my office, it's nice to be able to get some heat on up here, and leave the heat downstairs low until dh gets up.

I think I'm going to like my new primary care doctor. Shes seems on the ball. Monday she sent me a message with the test result of my pap (normal) and then added a comment that she saw I had the ultrasound and will be doing the needle biopsy and she will watch for the results and to contact her if I have any questions. Then within an hour or two of getting my needle biopsy results yesterday she sent me another message saying she's sure the radiologist already went over it with me, but just wanted to confirm that the result was reassuring and no breast mass. 

Almost done with the closets. I did the last coat of poly on the shelves after work yesterday. DH should be able to put them in later today, I would think. Then he has to measure out and cut the trim, which will need the stain and poly treatment, of course, but at least those pieces should be really quick and easy, even though they will take several days to stain and poly as well, to dry. Going forward, the only staining I will have to do is on his loft lumber and that is easier, less work. We aren't putting any poly on any of that. 

I have a headache at work I'm dealing with this morning. Our accounting software has a bill pay feature. I had one of the bills paid come back with a notification the check was returned to the bill pay company as undeliverable. I verified the vendors address as correct, but the bill pay pulls the funds out of our bank account when they send the check, not when the check is actually cashed. So here I have this payment that has been taken out of our checking, but the vendor never got it to cash. It's just a big mess and I was just on chat with the bill pay support help as I realized in bill pay the address they used is old....I'm like so are you telling me I update a vendor address in my accounting program, it doesn't get used as the address to send the next payment to? Well, it's supposed to.....but it didn't! I'm not in the mood. It really shouldn't be this difficult. And then while I'm in chat screen with the support, it won't let me do anything else in the program, so I can try to look up the check date to give the support person. GRRR! Sometimes I wish for the old days when I'd print out all the checks and set them on my boss's desk to sign, LOL.




Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Good news

All is well. The needle aspiration was what we hoped and just a fluid filled cyst, which now thanks to the needle, the cyst is also gone. Whew! So glad to have that off my mind, even though I wasn't overly worried, based on what the doctor who did the ultrasound said. The whole thing took a half hour and 29 minutes of that was preparing for it, LOL. The doctor did inject me with lidocaine, then put the needle in and the cyst was just filled with fluid which came right out in seconds and that was that. All done.

Then we stopped at Lowes to pick up some more building things we needed, plus we were out of trash can liners. Then we went to the grocery store to pick up some of the salmon we like. They only had 2 boxes left, so that was a bummer, I had wanted to get 4. Next stop was my mom's old place, to drop off that emergency call device. Then down the street to stop in and see my mom.

Finally last evening around 6:20 my phone rang and it was her # calling. Phone was back to working again. We had a nice chat. I then texted uncle that her phone is back on and she's in her room, so now would be a good time to call her (which I see from her call log he did). I got there about 9:15 this morning and when I turned the corner (the place is like an L shape) she had just come out of her room and was walking my way. She did recognize me and was really happy to see me. She was doing really well. I think being off the medicine she was mistakenly on has helped. And her dr stopping her anxiety med (she was on a low dose) doesn't seem to have affected her negatively, either. She was very happy and and said she likes this place. While she did recognize me and thought I was married, she couldn't remember for sure and couldn't remember if I had any kids. She did say "wait until I tell everyone what a great surprise visit I had this morning", which was sweet.

When I got inside the m/c unit there were quite a few of the residents still sitting in the dining room at the tables. It is common for some of them to reach out a hand as you are walking by. One gentleman did this time, so I took his hand and said hello and said "my hands are cold!" and he said "boy they sure are!" LOL. It was like 32 degrees and windy outside.

I'm back home now and going to start back to work here here in a few minutes.  Since I didn't know how long the appointment this morning was going to take I didn't anticipate being back to work for probably another hour. I did message my dd and my boss right after the procedure to let them know it was all ok. 

Thanks to everyone who wished me well with my procedure today, I appreciate it.

Monday, March 27, 2023

New day, same thing

New day, same thing, LOL. More staining. I don't think it will ever be done, haha. Saturday I got one side of the 7 shelves poly'd. The poly takes much longer to dry than the stain, so we have to wait like 24 hours to be able to flip the boards to do the other side. Yesterday I did the second coat. He worked on 2 of the big beams for the shop loft. I was able to get 2 coats of stain on those on Saturday. One about mid day and the second coat around 8pm. In between I did get the downstairs vacuumed and a nap. I don't think I've had a weekend nap it at least 2 weeks, maybe 3.

Yesterday dh also worked on the corner of the back loft and got quite bit done towards that. I helped a little here and there, but he'd just text me to come out, haha. No reason for me to stand around a half hour waiting until the next bit of help he needed. 

Still no luck getting my mom's phone to go through. I'm not going to bother the nurses station with it. It will happen all the time and they have more important things to take care of. Honestly, it's kind of been like having a week off. Probably much needed, more than I realize. I will see her tomorrow, after my needle procedure and will check her phone then.

About an inch of snow again yesterday morning. New day, same thing ;)

I've watched all the episodes of new shows I got into. Now I'm back to watching Doc Martin. It's a good one to fill in when I don't have other shows to watch. I also watched Dear Edward on AppleTV. I feel like someone recommended this show, but I don't know who. Or maybe I just decided to try it on my own. But someone mentioned Connie Britton to me recently so they must have been talking about that show. They kind of ended it where a lot was resolved but could also go on to a season 2.

When the HVAC owner called dh on Friday he said he thinks they will be out Monday, but will let him know for sure. They didn't let us know, but our neighbors did LOL. A week or so ago Mr mentioned to dh he saw the HVAC van at our house. DH told him what was wrong and that they would be coming back at some point to fix the issue. Mr said they needed something checked out with their furnace system so maybe when they are out here again for us, they could combine the visit out here and take a look at theirs. DH told him he'd let them know that when they called to let us know when they were coming, so on Friday dh did and apparently hvac guy called Mr and told him they will check their issue out when they are done with ours on Monday. So that's how we got confirmation they are coming out today, from Mr., haha. I'm sure they will be here any time. Usually it's around 8:45 when they get here. Hopefully it gets fixed. Having no zones has been annoying.

I have to process payroll today instead of my normal day would be tomorrow, since I'll be gone half the day. I just have to change a setting on the payroll system to let it let me process a day early. So far so good. For like the first time ever I don't have any questions of clarifications on time off to send to my boss. I think it really is the first time ever that our company calendar has matched up with the time of requested in our payroll system. 

Not much else going on. I'm sure I'll have more to update tomorrow, after I get my needle aspiration procedure done.

Saturday, March 25, 2023

Plugging along

After almost 2 weeks, the HVAC owner (not the tech guy who came out) finally called and discussed with dh the best way to fix our issue with our zones not working. It sounds like they will be out here on Monday, but he said his office will let dh know. DH told him any day, but Tuesday.

And the delivery company that is delivering the bookcase door called, and of course they wanted to come out next Tuesday. I laughed and said I knew you were going to say you know if it would be morning or afternoon? We'll be gone all morning Tuesday. No, they can't say what time, only that it will be between 9am and 4pm. Ok, then. Now it will be the following Tuesday, another week out.

We did go into the lumber store during my lunch break yesterday. I got the extra stain and a couple extra brushes and dh went out to their wood area and got the trim. Then we decided to stop in the little grocery store for bananas and a couple of donuts, if they had any. Then we filled up with gas and were back home within the hour. I quickly did the last 2 shelf boards with that needed the first coat. Then after work I spent about 90 minutes doing all the boards with the second coat. This morning I will get the first coat of poly on.

I found some wood clothes hampers I like. I guess about midway between what I wanted to spend and the prices I was finding for others I liked, so I guess I can live with that. I did some online searching for the best price. Again, that "google lens" feature sure helps make that easy. When I first saw the hamper on HSN it's $223. For one! LOL. Google lens search let me find two for less than $200 total for both. When we are done with our closets, including the dressers I want to get for each, we're going to try to estimate how much we spent in total to do them ourselves. Kind of hard since some of the lumber is for the shop lofts, but we can probably get a close estimate. Maybe a quarter of the cost of custom closets? We'll see.

Mom's phone was still off the hook/unplugged all yesterday. I did sent uncle a text letting him know, in case he was trying. And I told him I'm not sure how long a phone will work for her in her room, but we'll keep trying it awhile. 

DD may be up for another promotion at work. She's got (yet another) new boss, but she likes this guy so far. I think he was temporarily her boss during Covid, when her manager retired, but now he's back, hopefully permanent in this position at least for awhile, she's hoping.

Friday, March 24, 2023

Medical billing mistake

The first part of my morning has been spent figuring out a medical claim for dh. I just got an email from the hospital medical group that dh has a bill due. I log in and it's for $744 for lab work back 6 months ago in October. Why so long to bill? It showed the charge was $930 with a provider adjustment and patient balance due of $744. At first I could not remember what labwork dh had done, so I logged into his mychart account and oh yes, it was the prostate biopsy, so this is the lab part of the billing (how could I forget that?! it came back no cancer!). 

Something just wasn't sitting right with me. While we are on a higher deductible insurance plan, I still wanted to see the EOB. I went to log into his insurance plan (which is on my plan, but I can't see his info with my log in). I had set him up with a log in. I had it written down in my book. Nope. wouldn't work to log in. I tried resetting and it would not send any info the the email I used for his account. Finally, I tried setting up a new log in and password and that worked. Then I figured out there was a way to "share" him to my account, so I got that box checked. Now I can just log into my account and see both of our claims.

And no insurance claim for this lab work is showing. Weird! So, I log back into the hospital group account and dig around and realize that they billed his old insurance (which he hasn't had since mid 2021). I had given the doctor's office his new insurance last year, but when they sent the biopsy into the lab, the apparently didn't forward the insurance info. The odd part is how was there a "provider adjustment" of $186 when that insurance they billed wasn't even valid anymore? I sent a message to the hospital group that the wrong insurance was billed and gave the new insurance info. About an hour later I got a message back that they will resubmit the claim to the correct insurance. I'm sure we'll still owe about the same, but it needs to get processed through the right insurance plan.

We are almost done with the master closets. I have started the staining of the shelves, last night, but we ran out of stain with 2 boards left. We had planned to go to the town lumber store on Saturday but we'll run in today at lunch to get the stain and other supplies dh needs. I also need a couple more paint brushes. So, we just need to finish the shelves and install them and then add some trim (which is what dh needs from the lumber store). 

Spring just wants to sit back and wait around here. A little more snow this morning.

Well, I'm going to try giving my mom a call....I doubt I'll catch her, but at least I'm trying LOL.

Thursday, March 23, 2023

Whatever day it is

I woke up (or I rather I should say the cat woke me up) around 6am and did not know what day it was. My first instinct was it's Thursday, but then I thought that can't be right. It can't be Thursday already. I don't think I worked 3 days this week....but yep, it's Thursday. 

I haven't had any luck getting a hold of my mom the past several days. She's just never in her room to answer the phone. And I just tried again and now it goes straight to the recording saying she doesn't have voicemail set up, so that means the phone is off the hook. I have a feeling we are winding down to removing the phone from her room if neither I nor uncle can ever get a hold of her and she's rarely remembering to call me to say hello (or complain, ha!).

We're still wondering what will happen to the property next door. We finally saw the guy drive in and just turn around the other day. That is the first we've seen him here since last fall. Not to say he hasn't come through, but that's the first time we've seen him. Since we are usually home and since Mr and Mrs dogs bark up a storm as soon as someone turns onto our street, it's typical one of us would look out to see if someone is coming down our street (most often delivery). Their house out of state still has not sold and the last (and only time) they reduced the price on it was last July. It's been for sale for almost a year and a half now. Now would also be the time to get started building/site prep work, if you are going to build this year. One of the first things they need to do is have a well dug and they have still not done that (why they didn't do it last summer, I have no idea). And get the building site cleared. We started our building mid March of the year we started, basically as soon as we could get started moving the dirt. I see from old pics I have that our foundations got poured on April 20th of that year....and it still took until May of the NEXT year for it to all be finished. A couple people we have talked to mentioned maybe they will just sell the property to get something where they can build that metal building. That would be best....and I keep hoping to see a for sale sign go up...but at the same time, the longer they just delay and hold on to it, the longer nothing is done there, haha. If they sell it, then it's likely someone else will start building sooner than later.

I think the couple that owns the lot on the other side of them will be moving over here this summer, working towards their plan to build. If I recall, when they were here and came over to sign the letter we sent to the other guy about his 10,000 sf steel building and covenants, they said she was working through the end of this next school year and then they were going to move over to the little cabin they built last summer on her dad's nearby 20 acres and they will live in that while they build on their property. But, if I understood correctly they don't plan on starting to build until 2024.

Another sign that spring is coming is I heard some birds chirping outside this morning.

Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Saving time

I started using a couple of short cuts in emails for work. I realized I always type "thank you" at the end of my email, above my signature line. So, I just added the thank you to my signature line, LOL. And very recently I've noticed a new feature in emails where there are some suggested short replies. If one works, you can just click on it and it will open a reply email already to the person you are replying to and with the short message and then just send. I have so many, for instance, that I reply back with some variation of "your invoice is attached" and now that is one of the suggested replies. So, between that and the thank you added automatically, I have already saved time on about 10 emails this morning. I'm also going to add some shortcuts to the invoicing in our accounting program. We have this fairly new invoicing we are doing with several repeated descriptions used and I'm tired of either typing them out or cutting and pasting them.

DH is working on the closets some more. It's amazing how many pieces have to be cut, but he's getting there. Of course he never feels like his work is very good or professional. A year or so ago we priced out custom closets. For both it would have been like $10,000. I told him yesterday I don't need $10k closets to hang t-shirts in, LOL. I don't even have $10k in clothes or shoes, haha. We are thinking of buying a dresser to go into each of our closets. They are rustic, solid wood, and would make the closets look more built in, plus give us lots more storage space. My side doesn't have as much room for a long dresser as dh's side, but the collection I like has ones that will fit in each closet and then still match each other. There is also a 10% first order, which helps. Not ordering today or probably even soon, but maybe next month or two.

I got an email yesterday that our hidden bookcase door has shipped. Because of the size it's shipped with an LTL freight company and it said more tracking info won't be available for a couple of days. Everything big we've ordered in the past gets delivered to a freight delivery company in the city and then they deliver it. Once they have it, it can take weeks to get delivered here, which is so annoying. But, at least we know it's on it's way.

Again, my uncle texted me asking what did you say was the best time to call your mom? It appears he tried at 5:50pm (which is 4:50pm his time) and she wasn't back from dinner yet. I said try between 12:45 and 1:30pm...our time zone, it's an hour later here than where you are. I'm starting to wonder if he's getting forgetful. Not to mention I've told him several times he's not going to have much of a good conversation with her in the evenings, due to her sundowning. I tried around 1:50pm yesterday and no luck getting a hold of her. I was going to try around 10:30am but got busy with work and by the time I could try it was her lunch time. I just missed my 10:30 ish time slot to try again and just tried at 11am and no answer. Again, it seems she spends very little time in her room, which I suppose is a good thing.

I'm ready for May to get here. DD is coming for Mother's Day weekend and then Memorial weekend our friends from Texas are coming. It will be here before we know it, I'm sure.

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

More tests

I had my extra mammogram and ultrasound done and now on to the next appointment with it :(. It's a different mass, but near the other one I have that is a cyst. It's a little bigger and the doctor said (like 3 times) he's pretty certain this is also just a cyst, but the color is a little gray, vs black, which he said is likely just "debris" in with the fluid. But, to be certain he'd recommend having a needle aspiration done. If it comes out fluid, it's a cyst, if not they'll do a biopsy to send in. Or he said I could wait 6 months and have another ultrasound to see if any changes. I opted for the needle. I'd rather know for sure now then wonder. The nurse set me up for the appointment Tuesday of next week.

We are seeing some small signs spring is on it's way. The snow is melting, the days are a little warmer out, and one of my favorite signs....some baby calves at the ranch down the road about 5 miles. I also heard some Canadian geese honking on the river the other day, so they are back.

After my appointment we stopped at Lowe's to get some more screws dh needed and the closest rods. He had sent me links on Sunday evening to the boxes of screws he needed, via Amazon, but yesterday morning, as I was looking at Lowe's for the closet rod stuff I looked to see if they carried the boxes of screws he needed and they did and one box was $10 cheaper and one $8 cheaper than Amazon, so that's a win, plus he'd have them right away. We got all the screws (and then some) that he needed and headed back to the closet aisle. What a mess! They were basically remodeling that aisle and half the stuff was out in the aisle or shoved on other shelves. It took us twice as long to find what we were looking for, but we finally found what we came for.

I had set up a grocery pick up at Walmart, but we decided to stop at Wendy's drive thru first because we usually have to wait 5 or 10 minutes for Walmart to bring our stuff out, so we'd eat while waiting and that worked out good. Then we were also able to head home out the "back way" from Walmart, rather than going back thru the busy traffic area. We had last picked up an order on the 7th, so almost 2 weeks, but I really didn't need a full typical order. Mostly I needed bread and milk for sure, but still stocked up on some things since I was getting an order and that just lets us go longer until needing to go back. I spent about half what I normally do, but between that order and the one on the 7th, I'm in line for what I find I typically spend a month on groceries and misc supplies/personal care.

Since I just saw mom last Thurs and have to go back in next Tuesday morning, I decided to skip stopping in to see her. I was tired and just wasn't in the mood to channel my patience and ability to repeat myself over and over, all with a smile on my face and in my voice. My appt next Tuesday is at 7:45 am. I have no idea how long it will take, but I'm sure we can then stop at mom's after I'm done, which likely would be after 9am and she'll be done with breakfast. I also got an email yesterday afternoon from one of the ladies who works where mom used to live, asking if by chance I still have the emergency call device she was given 3 years ago when she moved in. I do have it (had forgotten about it) so I will drop that off next Tuesday morning to them. Mom never would wear it and kept forgetting what it was, etc, so early on I had just taken it home (still in the box) with me to hold on to, so it didn't get lost or thrown away.

Well, that's all for today. Back to work.


Monday, March 20, 2023

Work in progress

DH got quite a bit done on my closet yesterday and a little bit on his. We have matching closets, except my side ended up with the ductwork after we added our air exchanger system. They aren't huge walk in closets, especially after you start adding in the actual closet shelves. It's hard to get a good picture because taking a pic inside is too close to see much and outside you mostly see the doorway, LOL.

Here is the before, when he first started making a frame around the ductwork

Here is what he's gotten done so far. Lots of cutting and measuring pieces, that's for sure.

Next he needs to cut the plywood he got to make a shelf to go across the top, on all 3 sides and also another shelf there a bit lower on the left where that beam goes across. We may add more shelves later, but that is what we are starting with now. I'm happy with it, so far. We certainly aren't DIY'er experts at all, so while not a fancy (and too expensive!) custom made closet system, it will do.

While we are in the city today (for my extra mammogram imaging) we are going to go to Lowe's and get the closet rods and more screws he needs. I'm also going to see what they have for wood hangers. The rods will be on both sides and the back. Basically we need to put in the shelves, rods and trim pieces to cover up the shelf edges and it will be done. His side will look similar but instead of the enclosed corners, his will be shelves. A good place to put all his sweatshirts.

90% of the time I receive a new friend request on Facebook it's someone I don't know, nor do we have any friends in common. I just got one from some lady in Minnesota. Ok, I've known a couple people with her first name in my past history (an old coworker and a 2nd cousin), but she doesn't look familiar, fit the age, etc. I thought maybe she's a member of one of the groups I follow. So, I just replied back that I got her friend request, but I don't recognize her name, are we acquainted? She looks around my age, maybe a little younger. Basically I wanted to know why she was sending me a friend request. She just replied back "No". Ok, LOL. People are odd.

I'm just ready to get today done and hoping for a good/benign result, so I can put that out of my mind. At least we know where we are going haha. I've been there for an ultra sound before and dh had to go there for at least a couple of images when he was having his pancreas and gall bladder checked out.

Sunday, March 19, 2023

Stain, rest, repeat

Just to clarify - me being sick of staining has really nothing to do with dh. It's just not my "thing", but I'd rather stain any day than have to paint, so at least there's that, haha. I'd rather do just about anything than paint.

The staining of all the boards and beams is just a small portion of these projects dh has (finally!) started on. He is doing so much, from the design/engineering, the figuring out what lumber and supplies he needs, getting them at the lumber store, or ordering online, measuring, cutting and then actually building. None of which I have any clue how to do, nor have the physical strength to do what he's doing. I can help with the staining part. Do I enjoy it much? not really. In small doses, I don't mind it. He was being really stupid (and probably very tired) Friday evening when he thought all the boards he had just cut up for the closet project were somehow going to miraculously be stained and clear coated by Saturday morning, LOL.

Here is the mostly done loft in one corner. He still wants to finish the underneath "ceiling" of it with tongue and groove (more staining!) and figure out some lighting, but he's going to wait until he's done with the big loft that will go across the back of the shop. But, it's ready to store his junk and he's been able to already fill it up. He got started a bit on the back loft yesterday.

Yesterday wasn't too bad. My wrist was feeling better by morning and my wrist support helped and with the amount of boards to stain, I was able to work about an hour and be done, wait to dry, then the second coat, a few hours later, always goes on faster. Then after dinner the second coat was finally dry and I had just 4 boards that needed the clear coat brushed on.

It's just now starting to get light out this morning. Still too dark to see much outside but I can hear all the turkeys gobbling again this morning. Yesterdays temp reached 54 degrees. It was wonderful. And then dd texted me a picture of all the flowers at her Lowe's garden center. I'm still a couple months away from seeing that where I live, haha. The cat is going outside more and more as the weather is warming up. A lot of the snow is melting away now.

I think today he will be able to work on my closet some more, the boards should be dry and ready to use. I need to figure out a grocery order to put in to pickup after my mammogram/ultrasound tomorrow. 

I haven't heard from the woman mom's previous caregiver asked if I would talk to her about the m/c place, as she was considering moving her father there. But I did get a text from my TX friend yesterday. Her best friend's mom is showing signs of dementia (her dad passed last year and now she and her siblings are really seeing how bad her mom is) and had some questions about the cost of memory care, so I passed on what my mom's cost and that part of the cost is the care depending on what "level" of care they are assessed at. I also told her to tell her friend (I have met her before) she's welcome to call or text me anytime if she has questions.

For dinner last night I made spaghetti, which we will probably have again tonight as leftovers. If I have time today, which I should, I think I'll make some brownies. We haven't had those in a long time. That last cake I made was a bit dry. It was one of those "funfetti" cakes and usually I have always gotten the Pillsbury brand, but for some reason the 2 boxes I bought last time are Betty Crocker. So, not as good? I'll get Pillsbury again and make that next time to compare.


Saturday, March 18, 2023

I'm over it

I am so sick of staining boards. I worked all day yesterday and then spent 2 hours staining boards and putting a clear coat on some that will go in the closet. By the time I was done I couldn't even move my carpal tunnel wrist. I think it's the putting on the clear with a paint brush that is hurting my wrist. When I apply the stain I just use a rag and wipe it on and haven't had any wrist issues. This morning I need to do one more coat of clear on the boards. Ugh.

Plus dh was being annoying about the whole thing. He has no patience and I don't know how many times I've told him how many coats of stain and clear need to go on. Two coats of stain, but those dry pretty quickly, and then 2 coats of clear. The clear takes a lot longer to dry. I don't know how many times I've said "2 coats" and how many times I've said "you have to wait for it to dry". While I was staining after work he kept complaining that he won't be able to put these boards up into the closet until Sunday now and acting like I could have done this sooner, with the clear coat. How? I just got the staining done Tuesday evening. Wednesday I had work and we were gone half the day going to my dr appt and errands. He decided to take Wed eve off from working on it, not to mention I was too tired anyway. I got to it the next chance I had. It's not like he's on a schedule or has to be back at work on Monday morning so he needs to get it done by Sunday. I just ignored him and kept staining and clear coating. He did say, as he was watching me stain a beam for the shop loft "you do it better than I do. I put on too much and it's a mess and too much doesn't end up soaking into the wood" I just said yep, plus I'd rather not have my rag sopping with stain and making a big mess around everything. 

Temps are still cold overnight and in the morning but it is getting up to mid to high 40's during the day. Where dd lives her tulips have started to sprout the green leaves. I can now start to see spots of our (brown) lawn where the snow is finally melting, LOL.

I'm not looking forward to doing more staining this morning, after he gets up and going. I have my wrist thing on and will try leaving that on under the latex glove, while I'm staining. Hopefully that helps my wrist last a bit longer.

Friday, March 17, 2023

One more appointment done

I had my annual check up with the new doctor. I liked her, she seemed nice and I got it all done, even the blood draw. Apparently now they are saying it's not so necessary to have to fast before it, so that was good. I didn't have to make a different trip to get that done. By later afternoon I already had those results in mychart and all was fine. My BP was good at 121/70. This office has a lab there, so that is convenient, too. I also said I needed a refill on my prescription to the mail order pharmacy and when I got home there was an email from the pharmacy that they are processing the order.

DH had driven me in and we then went to Harbor Freight to pick up some latex gloves as I have used what he had left with all my staining. We were trying to kill a little time before stopping in to see my mom, as I didn't want to get there while she was in the middle of eating lunch. We then stopped at Wendy's and got some grilled chicken sandwiches to go and ate in the parking lot at mom's place and I went in about 12:50. Everyone was done with lunch, but a few were still sitting around the dining tables. It's so quiet in there when there isn't an activity. I guess it's because the residents really do not talk with each other much, at this point. I will see some sitting at a table together but they never really seem to be talking much.

Mom seemed good. Her room was all tidy this time, but most of her clothes in her closet were not there, nor in her hamper, so I'm really just hoping it was out being washed, LOL! She was glad to see me. The only negative type comment she made, when I first got there was something about "they" don't want me joining in. I'm not sure who "they" are, but I think she's referring to the other residents, most likely because most of them really don't say much. She's still a bit focused on how much this place is costing her but then will say but I don't think they've raised it in awhile, have they? I just told her the amount she used to pay at her old place and nope, they haven't raised it at all. Two minutes later she'd say the same thing. I stayed about a half hour. I got the POLST form taped to her door and a copy dropped off at the nurses station on my way out.

Uncle had just texted me about 20 minutes before I got to her place. After I got there I texted him that I was with her and would he like me to call him so he can chat with her a minute, but he never replied back before I left, so as I was leaving I just texted him I was leaving, but she was in her room for now, if he wanted to try calling her.

We did not need any groceries, since we just stocked up last week, so we headed home and I got back to working around 2:10. I'll also be back in the city on Monday for my extra mammogram/ultrasound, so will probably pick up more groceries then. I'll most likely stop in for another visit to see mom afterwards.

For dinner I made pancakes. Good fluffy, from scratch pancakes (the only way to make them, haha). I love the buttery/vanilla flavor of these pancakes. Dh doesn't even really like pancakes much, but he loves these pancakes, to have once in awhile.

Ever since I woke up this morning I'm feeling like there is something I'm supposed to do, something I am forgetting to do. No idea what. I did get another email from the company making our hidden bookcase door, that it is now in staining part of production and that takes 4-7 days, and then it will move to packaging/shipping. I'm sure the shipping will take forever as items like this they tend to use this freight company out of the city to get to it's final destination and they only come out this way like once a week and then we are last on their route, so if they are late, we get cancelled and have to wait another week. I hate that big freight items have to come through them, but it is what it is.

Thursday, March 16, 2023

Grumpy day

I apparently woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning. I'm feeling extremely grumpy and just not feeling in the mood for anything today. I do have to leave in about an hour to go to my doctor's appointment for my annual check up. But, I don't think that's why I'm feeling grumpy. No idea why though. I don't usually feel like this.

I see mom's m/c charge finally went through her checking. I know there can/will be extra charges above the monthly rent/care level charge. Like I signed her up for them to supply the depends. If she has her hair cut, or they take them to the new coffee bar in the other part of the building, it goes on their monthly billing. But, you'd think they would either mail or email a detail of the billing? So, now I've emailed the business manager to ask that, as mom's charge was $35 more and I'd just at least like to know what it was for. 

I watched the new show "Shrinking" on Apple+tv. It's a good one. With Jason Segal and Harrison Ford. Other than I guess I'm old fashioned and don't feel the F word is necessary in every scene, it's a good show. One line I could relate to, for sure, haha. The woman (empty nester) next door's husband is due to retire soon and she's worried about him always being home. She said something to the effect "I love you to pieces, but I can only love you an hour and a half a day, so you'll need to find stuff do do out of the house". LOL. 

When I get done with my dr appointment it is most likely going to be right in the middle of mom's lunch time, so that's not super convenient for a visit time. I'll probably go run an errand at a store for a half hour and then try to get to m/c around 12:45. She should be finishing up by then. I don't plan to stay too long. I'm not taking the whole day off work. Sometimes, when reading the dementia caregivers page I follow, people will comment they visit every day, or stop by every evening for a couple hours, or they comment when they visit they stay several hours. Then I feel like a terrible daughter and think to myself how do they do it every single day? or even for several hours at a time? I can't imagine being there for 2-3 hours every visit. After 15 minutes I have already answered the same question half a dozen times. Typically I'm there about 30-40 minutes. I haven't gotten a call yet from the person mom's old caregiver wanted to visit with me about the m/c place. It's a hard decision, I'm sure they are going through a lot of stress and emotions.

Well, time to leave for my dr appt. Back home in a few hours, I guess.

Wednesday, March 15, 2023

To do this and that

My mom's credit union actually called me yesterday when they got my POA and change of address form. I had included my phone number. Her CD doesn't mature until April 12th and she said it's best to wait until that date to close it, otherwise there would be like a $1200 early cancel fee! I said no problem to wait until the CD matures. She has noted the CD to transfer over with her savings account there, then they would send out a check for the account balance. I asked if there was a way to electronically transfer it to her bank and she said she will email me the wire transfer form. I think that will be much easier and quicker than mailing a check....which I would then have to wait and deposit it when I am in the city, delaying it even more. But, the wire transfer email she sent with the form also includes a form to get do a wire? Ridiculous. So, I guess I'll just have them mail the check and either mail it into mom's bank for deposit or deposit it when I'm in the city. I'm not spending an hour or more, including driving just to go get it notarized. I was happy that someone was on the ball and actually called me, rather than me calling and trying to find out if they got my documents. My mom actually worked at this credit union many many years ago. Like over 40 years ago, LOL. Back when it was just a single office within a company and there were 3 ladies that worked in the credit union. I still remember my mom's boss's name. Crazy I can remember her name and now my mom no longer even remembers she worked there for like 10 years or so.

Yesterday afternoon I got a text from mom's previous caregiver K. She has a client with dementia who is declining fast and his daughter is considering the m/c place I put mom in and was hoping she could talk with someone who has a family member there and was wondering if I'd be willing to talk with her. I said of course, I'd be glad to help any way I can. She is giving her my number to get a hold of me.

Yesterday during my lunch break I got the coat of Kilz primer down on the plywood floor of the little loft he built in the shop. After dinner I then applied the coat of paint to it, so now that is done and once dry dh can move his junk up there. I also stained another 4x4 beam he will be using for the other loft. 

The wood hangers I ordered from Target arrived this morning, or rather one box did. Why wouldn't they just ship both boxes at the same time? So dumb. Anyhow, I don't like them. They looked like they had a bit of a stain color to them in the picture, but they are natural wood. I want something with a little bit of stain color, plus they seem small. The pants rod that goes across the bottom of the hanger isn't very wide. I'll probably just return them to the actual Target store, rather than try to ship them back. I guess I'll just get the ones that have the silver hanger hook, there were lots of different ones in that style with a more stained finish. I'll just order them from Amazon.

I need to remember to take that green sheet of paper with the instructions to tape to mom's door when I go in tomorrow I'm just going to scotch tape it along all 4 sides and hopefully she won't try to take it down. It's very likely she won't even notice it. She sure never paid attention to any signs I tried to make and leave for her in her old apartment. I also really need to get another chair for her room. There is plenty of room to set one and we need the extra seat when I am visiting and if we are in her room. I'm not sure what to get, it doesn't need to be anything fancy, that's for sure. I'm tempted just to pick up a folding chair.

I've resubcribed to Apple +tv so I can start watching Ted Lasso. Such a good show and I'm sure I can find some more good shows on their to watch while I have it for a couple of months.

And oh ya, unplugging my firestick from the wall outlet appears to have done the it's working again and while I've only watched it a couple of times since, it connects right away and hasn't froze up once during the shows. At least I can hold off for now in buying a new firestick, so that is good news. 

Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Banking and more banking

A few months ago I took advantage of earning $325 in a cash back reward by opening a checking account. It was to take 90 days and I just checked the account this morning and the $325 has been added. Nice! I had to deposit $525 and also do one paycheck electronic transfer of at least $1000 and then leave a $500 balance in there to avoid the monthly fee. Now I can pull the money out and close it. I'm going to look for another rewards account, be it checking or a credit card. Most of the checking/bank account ones are for pretty high deposit amounts, so I can't do those, but this one for $325 was nice and easy.

Speaking of banks, with work I'm having to update several vendor payment accounts as they had been using Silicon Valley Bank. I opened my email yesterday morning to find several emails that these companies have had to change banks. A couple of them I have sent via ACH before, so I need to update their new banking info on my end.

And still speaking of banks. I mailed a copy of my POA to my mom's credit union last Friday. I'm guessing they will get it today. I'll try giving them a call tomorrow to see if they got it and can get that account closed out and the money transferred to her regular bank she uses. 

And one last bank thing. I've spent since Friday reconciling bank accounts for work, haha. I'm doing January right now and down to $551 off. GRRR! We have so many transactions each month, it usually takes me a couple hours or more to figure it all out. This is when I have to waste paper and print the statement out, so I can use a pen or highlighter to mark off each transaction. I always try to just have the statement open on one screen and the register open on the other to reconcile and once in a blue moon I get lucky and reconcile quick, but not usually.

I guess I'm going to have to set my alarm for awhile until my body adjust to the new time. Usually I'm awake between 6:30 and 7 and up by 6:50 or 7. This morning I woke up at 7:27. 

We didn't hear back from the hvac guy yesterday, so we don't know yet when they plan on getting back out here. The guy needed to confer with the owner on how best to fix it and the owner is supposed to be back this week. Hopefully they will be getting out here again soon.

Monday, March 13, 2023

Work week

Dh is making progress. The small corner loft is ready for me to paint the floor part. We just use up some leftover white paint from the shop to seal the floor. I'll probably end up working on that during lunch or after work - or both. I still have one more coat of clear to go on 3 beams for the closets. It got warm out yesterday. Sunny and 45 degrees. Once I get the floor part painted and it's dried, dh can then move some stuff up there. He still has the underneath to finish, but he will probably wait until he gets the back wall loft done and do them at the same time. He will finish it off with tongue and groove boards (yay, more staining.....) and also needs to figure out what he wants to do for some lighting. 

Of course it was hard to go to bed at my normal time last night, so I stayed up later and then of course hard to wake up my normal time this morning. I wish they'd just stop the daylight savings time and leave it the same all year. 

I just got an email from the business manager at mom's m/c place and she did get my email with the banking info attachment, from my other email I tried, so she will be processing that today. I need to remember to stop using that one email if I'm attaching. Grrr. That's so ridiculous that it won't work. It's Comcast for goodness sake, you'd think it would work no issues. I can receive attachments, no problem, just can't send/reply with any. At least it's resolved now.

This week coming up I have my doctor appointment, with a new doctor, for my annual check up. I didn't go see my mom this past weekend, as I saw her during the week last week and I'll stop in again this week, when I go in for my appointment. Then I'll be back in on Monday the 20th, for my ultrasound, so I'll see her again that day. At least that gives me my weekends free for a couple more weekends.

DH just got back from the lumber store. Turns out the original stuff that we had for those access panels to the attic area in the garage are "birch" plywood, which is cabinet grade type plywood. Funny thing is it's cheaper than the other plywood, LOL. I'll get this plywood stained and dh will cover the ducting up in the corner of my closet. That's really going to change it in there. I don't think he's going to do anymore work today. He's pretty worn out and I'm tired, too. I went out quick this morning and did another coat of clear on the beams and realized how sore my wrist and arm is now from all the staining.

I tried to call my mom about 10:15 morning, but no answer, but just now she had one of the staff guys call me from her phone in her room, as she was apparently having trouble knowing how to call me. I wouldn't say she's confused - just not remembering much at all. But at least she's not telling me she wants to leave or go home. Somehow we managed to have an 8 minute conversation about nothing ;) I guess when she asks me what I'm going I probably shouldn't say I'm working as I spent most of the 8 minutes repeating myself that it's totally fine if she calls me when I'm working. I work from home and can take a break and answer my phone just about any time.

My work email and messaging has seemed quiet this morning and then I realized my boss has today off, LOL. Often those are good days to get more done ;)

Sunday, March 12, 2023

Busy Saturday

Yesterday morning we went into town to the lumber store to pick up what dh ordered. A bunch of beams and also a couple pieces of plywood. He was also wanting a certain drill bit, but they didn't have that size, but suggested to hardware store, so we went there and they did have it. After we got home and dh took a closer look at the plywood, he's thinking he either ordered the wrong kind of they gave him the wrong kind. He wanted the more expensive plywood that is finished on both sides. This has one side, kind of smooth and finished, but even then, nothing like the piece he had gotten a year or so ago. Well, he didn't get it. He had hired this local guy to put in attic accesses into our garage ceiling and he picked up the plywood from the lumber store and told dh it was a nicer, more expensive kind, but would look a lot nicer because it is so smooth and finished. This is what dh wanted but what he got yesterday doesn't look anything like the small scrap piece he has leftover to compare it to.

I stained 2 more of the big beams he just got (for the shop loft). I have to do 2 coats, so while waiting for the first coat to dry (by then it was 2pm) I went in and took a nap. Mostly just to rest my back muscles, which had tightened up. Earlier I had emptied out my closet, which probably helped to overdo my back a bit. He worked on putting some 2 x 4's together to enclose the ducting in my closet. When we added that air exchanger system last year, the only place the hvac guy had to put this duct work was, unfortunately, in my closet. When dh is done, both corners, with the ducting, will be covered with wood. He's going to check back with the lumber store on Monday to see if he got the wrong plywood or what. But, he's kind of bummed because now he can't move forward until he gets the right plywood he wants to use. Putting in the bedroom closets shelves and hanging rods is really going to make the closets seem smaller, LOL. They weren't huge to begin with, but there are 2 of them, so plenty of room for each of us to store our clothes and things, but it will seem much different in them, once we are done.

Last night I watched a couple more episodes of Doc Martin, which I am enjoying. I like the dog, LOL. 

This morning I did just find some wood coat hangers with black hooks, with Target. I ordered 2 30 packs (though will most likely need more) to start with. They are $30 for a 24 pack and I still had $30 left on a Target gift card, so one was no cost to me. Sitting on the floor of my closet had been a box of old hangers, of all kinds. Plastic, wire, and a few padded. I handed to box to dh and said this can go in the garbage, unless you want to hold out a few wire ones (seems like those end up being needed for other things every so often). Good lord, you should have seen his face! "These are good hangers" No they aren't!! Throw the damn box away! I should have known to just throw them out myself. I'll bet you money the box is now in his shop somewhere.

Now when I turn on my tv's firestick it won't connect to wifi at all. Yesterday I tried unplugging it from the wall behind the tv. I was then going to turn it on to try, but dh then called out for some help in the garage and after I got done with that I totally forgot, haha. I ended up watching Doc Martin on my ipad, as by evening I didn't even want to try messing with the tv and figured it wasn't going to work anyway. I'm sure I'll just need to buy a new firestick. 

It will now be lighter out longer this evening, which will be nice. I didn't really lose an hours sleep, since I just wake up at the same time every morning anyway. I'll feel it tomorrow morning when I have to be up at 7 and it will feel like 6. Then it seems to take me a good week or two to adjust completely.

I also cut a good 2 1/2 inches off my hair after I got out of the shower yesterday morning. It was getting way too long. I still need to get some layers put back in, as I cut most of that off, but I usually do that a different day, and when I have more time to spend on it, which I did not yesterday. 

For the past several days the muscles in my thighs are so sore. The only thing I can think I've been doing this past week is just standing on concrete and staining boards. What that has to do with my thigh muscles, I have no idea, LOL I'm sure today will be more staining. Not my favorite thing to do, but I'll take staining over painting any day. I hate painting.

Saturday, March 11, 2023

One project done

Well, we got lots of snow yesterday. Big fluffy flakes coming down for hours. For dinner, I took some frozen salmon patties out of the freezer. I need to get some more of those, they are really good. Walmart doesn't carry it, so I think when I'm back in the city next week for my doctor appointment I will stop at the grocery store that does and pick up about 4 more boxes. We like to have that about once a week or so. I won't need another grocery order from Walmart next week, so I will just swing into the grocery store and pick up the salmon after my appointment.

I'm getting annoyed with 2 things. The main email I use for personal stuff has been really glitchy the past several months if I'm attaching something to an email. The recipient doesn't get the email. If there's no attachment they get the email. The other thing I'm annoyed with is repeating something I already did. I've been watching my mom's checking since the first of the month to see her new m/c rent deducted. I supplied them the form and a voided check with all the move in paperwork. I emailed the guy to ask him about it and he forwarded it to someone in the accounting department. She sent me another form to fill out and said to also include a voided check. I replied back, just attaching another copy of the move in paperwork I had saved to pdf and said please see pages 2 and 3 with this info. This was late Tuesday. Yesterday morning nothing has come out of her account. I then remembered I've been having this attaching/send issue (I don't attach very often) so I emailed the lady in accounting to ask if she got my email with the banking info attached? She said no. So, I replied back that I'm having issues with this email address so I will send it from a different email and also said the info is in my original move in paperwork that they have. So, I sent her 2 emails back in reply, one to let her know I was sending it from a different email and then I sent one from the other email, with the pdf attached. I asked her to let me know she got it. No reply. There should be no reason she shouldn't have gotten those 2 emails. So annoying. Not to mention I'm not going to fill out their EFT authorization again and scan another voided check when I already did this and gave it to them. If it hasn't come out of her bank on Monday, I'll call her.

DH got the shelf added to the gun safe closet in his den. It was really hard to find a stain to match our trim, because Golden Pecan stain on pine wood looks absolutely nothing like it does on knotty alder. But, I think we got as close as we could. Later this morning we are going to to the lumber store to pick up more lumber posts he ordered that have come in. He wants to get started on my walk in closet today. I will have more staining to do, LOL.

The Murphy bookcase door for this closet is in "pre-production" status as of an email I got a few days ago. 

A long time ago I told myself when we ever get our stinkin master closets done I want all nice wood matching hangers. I need some for the guest closet and guest bedroom closets, too. This morning I remembered and was like "oh! I can find some hangers to order now!" LOL. It seems all the metal hanger piece that goes over the rod are all in silver metal. I'd love to find some hangers that are in bronze. Wonder if there is such a thing. I also want new hampers for each of our closets. We've had these old hampers forever LOL. One is pink and one is blue. The pink one is a hand me down from my mom probably 30 years ago haha. It's unfortunate that the one I like online is wood and $209....for a hamper! And I'd need 2. Not happening. I'll keep looking.

Friday, March 10, 2023

Happy (snowy) Friday

I finally called the credit union mom has a savings and cd with (well, I did try once before and got a recording to leave a voicemail). The quarterly statements she gets show the maturity date on the 5 year cd as April 2023, but in looking through the files I took from her apartment when moving her, I found a little slip of paper on the CD that says it matured on Feb 2023. Oh well, either way I'm closing out the account and getting it transferred to her checking so the money can be used for her memory care rent. They told me to mail in my DPOA, along with a copy of my ID and then once they have that on file, I can take care of closing the account out, so hopefully by next week. I will get this out in the mail to the CU tomorrow Or if the CD doesn't actually mature until April 12th, I'll wait until then to close it, if there is a penalty for closing early. The amount that is in this CU will cover about 4 months of memory care costs. And getting that account closed and that money put in with her regular checking/savings will be one less account I need to keep track of for her. 

Mom's previous caregiver, K, texted me again asking how my mom is adjusting. She's very sweet to check in on her.

Apparently our issue with our heating system is not an easy fix. Some wiring needs replaced and they are trying now to figure out how best to do it. It sounds like its some wire from the outside heat pump that goes inside to the furnace, from the kitchen wall, to communicate with each other. At least that's where he said he traced the bad wire to. He said they don't use that kind of wire anymore, due to problems. I asked why it took 4 years to start having a problem, LOL. They don't know. He needs to get with his boss (company owner) to figure out how to fix it, but boss is out of town this week.

I did manage to catch my mom in her room after lunch yesterday and she answered. A little confused, but not terrible. I've noticed lately, as I often try to call around 1:30 or so, that she looks at her digital clock and thinks the 1 is a 7. That's happened several times, even before the move.  She kept asking if she has my ph# and I kept telling her it's programmed into her phone with my name next to the button. She'd see it and say oh ok, and 2 sentences later would ask again. Then she mentioned she must have drove her car here (where she lives) and would have to check on that. I just said ok. She said well, I must have driven, otherwise I don't know how I would have gotten here.

It's snowing again and supposed to snow most of the morning and early afternoon. Sounds like another plowing and shoveling day for dh. This is his start on the corner loft in his shop. He didn't get too much done yesterday as the hvac guy was here until like 12:30.

Ok, I just walked down the street in the snowing weather to mail the documents to the credit union and some other mail to go out. Definitely still winter, here. There was enough snow on the ground that I put my boots on. Neighbors walk to get on the school bus less than an hour earlier and their tracks in the street were almost covered up.

Today I am processing payroll, so that will take me most of the morning, I'm sure, but so far it's going smooth and I only have one question my boss needs to answer and have sent that email off to her and am waiting a reply. We have an company outlook calendar for PTO days off, but sometimes they do not match up with the days off showing as requested in the payroll system.

I did find that show Doc Martin and started the first episode, but only about halfway through it so far, but it seems good so far and looks like it will be something I enjoy.

Dh and I got a laugh the other day. He has this "architects ruler", this 3 sided thing with 6 different measuring scales, that he uses often. It's actually a ruler I got back in my college days, when I took a drafting course. Well, it snapped in half the other day and he brings it to me and says he loves this ruler, oh no! Can I get him another one? I said well, I'll look.......that thing is literally 40 years old! (god, I'm old), they probably don't even make them or use them anymore, with everything being computers now. But, what do you know, the same exact ruler by the same company is still made, so I ordered him one from Amazon for $6.70. It should last another 40 years, LOL.

It's really snowing hard. Just in 30 minutes my footprints are pretty much covered up now. It looks like dh will keep busy today :)

Thursday, March 9, 2023

More appointments

The new doctor for mom had told me her office administrator guy would call me to schedule mom's next appointment in 4-6 months and he did call me the very next day, so now we have an appointment to see her again in August. Nice that they seem to be on top of things and follow up as promised. One of the things the dr. took care of during the visit was filling out a "POLST" form, which I wasn't familiar with. It's "Provider Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment" and gets taped to the back of her room door. She did go over it and asked mom her choices, which mom seemed to pretty much understand. We went with No CPR/do not resuscitate and allow for natural death, ok to do selective treatment, say for example she had an infection or broke a bone, but not intensive care, and no feeding tube if she stops eating.

I had my mammogram done and have to go back in for additional views. I had to do this 5 years ago for what they determined was a small pea sized benign cyst in my left breast. I have dense tissue, which I guess makes it hard to see, so the ultrasound was needed to make sure. The mammogram results are reading pretty much the same as 5 years ago "mass in left breast at 9 o'clock", more imaging recommended. So, I'm hoping that this will be just the same thing as before, but I go in on the 20th. When I went 5 years ago they told me right then it was just a benign cyst.

DH is making a little progress on his lofts, but mostly it's been me staining everything he's getting ready, first. I did some more during a lunch break yesterday and then after dinner. I think I am done for a little while now, while he now gets started building. This morning we are just waiting for the hvac guy to get here, pretty soon.

I tried to call my mom a couple of times yesterday morning, but no answer. I don't have voicemail set up on her phone (obviously she wouldn't know how to access it) so after about 5 rings it goes to a recorded message that says the party you are trying to reach does not have voicemail set up. So, I tried again after lunch and rather than ringing the 5 times, it went straight to this recorded message. That tells me she got her phone off the hook. I tried several more times over the afternoon, but same thing. When dh was there with me a week or so ago, he noticed her phone was partially off the base and set it back on right. I'm sure she's done this again. I'm not sure how long we'll be able to let her have a telephone. It doesn't do much good if she's leaving it off the hook and it doesn't work. And I'm not going to bother the staff to call and ask them to set it back on. They have enough to do without bothering with that. Probably why most of the residents do not have phones in their room. I'll give it a chance for awhile longer, but we'll see. Her not having a phone would also give me the break from uncle calling her - and then me, right?! When I visit her I could just call him from my cell and he could talk to her then every so often.

My side job boss (who I also have become friends with over the years, so we chat often about non-work stuff) texted me the other evening that they've been watching a tv show I'd probably like called Doc Martin. Have any of you watched it? I'll need to find out what streaming it's on to check it out.

Wednesday, March 8, 2023

The new doctor

Yesterday afternoon was busy, but productive. I worked until 12:45 and then we left so I could be there for mom's new doctor appointment with the doctor that comes into memory care. Her appointment was at 2pm but I wanted to get there early, just in case, so I was there a little after 1:30. Mom was in her room, sitting in her recliner, with the telephone in her lap. But what a mess her room was! The recliner had been pushed over closer towards the end of her bed, from the corner where it was, so now all her cable wiring for her modem/telephone and her modem sitting on the floor were exposed (instead of out of sight behind the recliner.) Her bed unmade and lots of clothes laying on her bed. Even a pair of pants were on the little counter next to her sink. I moved her chair back over. Those cables are the black kind that are kind of stiff and don't bend too easy. Plus it looked awful with all those showing and potentially a trip hazard, even though they were next to the wall. I then started picking up all her clothes, not sure if dirty or clean. She had put her hamper in the closet. One of her shirts was wadded up down between her blankets, when I made her bed. I peeked in the shared bathroom and there was a shower chair in the shower with something draped over it. I picked it up and it was mom's dress pants.....why they got put there, who knows!

The doctor came in about 5 minutes after 2 and she is AMAZING! I really really like her. She spent almost an hour with us. She (purposely) tried to ask mom all her questions, but of course mostly got "Oh, I don't know" and then mom would ask me. Or answered wrong. She asked her where she lived before moving here. Mom said the town in Oregon where she grew up. I have had a feeling she is now back in that time, especially as she had been wanting to call her mom those first few days after the move. The doctor asked her how many children she has. She thought for a second and then said 3. I said no, it's just me and mom said something like, well I'm thinking of those other guess is she was thinking how many kids were in her family back then, 3, her and her 2 brothers. Even if by some very slim chance (and I highly doubt it) she was thinking of my step siblings as included, the answer would have been 5, not 3. I don't think she was thinking of them. I don't think she even really remembers now her marriage of 37 years to my step dad.

The doctor said definitely no on that Aricept med and I explained what happened and she's not supposed to be taking it but her previous doctor did not remove it from her list of meds. This doctor said she wanted to pretty much discontinue all meds that we can. She said at this age and stage of Alzheimer's there is no benefit to most of what she is taking. So, we are stopping the cholesterol and the acid reflux meds and also the Paxil (anti anxiety/depression med). She said that med is actually not good at all for dementia patients and can make them more confused. She said that she is on a very low dose and wants to try just stopping it and not replacing it, but if we do need to replace it with something else, there are much safer meds to use. She's only keeping her on one med now, that is for her essential tremor she has in her right hand. I was happy to hear all this.

She was just such a kind sweet person and when she was done and telling my mom it was so nice to meet her, my mom said "it was nice to meet you and I really like you!" That made me feel good. Of course she won't remember her 10 minutes later, but still, LOL. Earlier in the day I had emailed the m/c guy I did all the move in paperwork with as her March rent was supposed to come out of her checking but it hadn't yet. He replied back and also said my mom seems to have settled in well and he always sees her doing activities and dancing (always with the dancing LOL).

The doctor left at 3 and I left right after. I had an appointment for a mammogram at 3:30 just a few blocks away, so we decided to go into Wendy's and get our dinner early and at it at the med office parking lot until it was time for me to go in for my appt. I was in and out of there in less than 15 minutes and glad to have that done for another year. Then we stopped at Walmart and picked up a load of groceries I had ordered and headed back home.

And then at 7:40pm my uncle called. Ugh. He had just called my mom and had an "upsetting" call with her where she was telling him people are taking stuff from her room, she's scared, etc. I again explained that late evening is not a good time to try to have a conversation with her, she is confused and tired. Not to mention then he has to call me. There's nothing I can do about it! I just said, well, that's why she's there, because she's confused, especially at night, and now she can be looked after. He said yes, because if she was at her other place she could wander around. I will send him a text today to try to remind him he needs to try to call her during the day or right after dinner. She could have already been in bed at that time he called as when I had the camera at her old apartment the last couple of months she was often in bed by then. He said she also told him she hasn't seen or talked to me in a long time. I said I was just with her for an hour and a half today ;)

Now our furnace issue is supposed to get fixed on Thursday. Hopefully he gets back out here sooner rather than later, only because having to heat our bonus room now is costing extra.

Tuesday, March 7, 2023

Zoned out

The lady from the HVAC called back around 2:45 yesterday and said the service guy was done with his calls he had and would head out to our place now. He got here around 3:30. It's something to do with the zones control. He thought he had it fixed by replacing some wire out at our heat pump, but then as he was standing there for awhile chatting with dh I noticed the zones stopped working again. So, back down in the crawl space to the furnace he went. He's not sure exactly what it is, but will have to start replacing parts to see, so he'll have to come back. Probably not until Wed or Thursday now, he said the lady will call me to let me know when, as she handles their scheduling. We do have heat, thankfully, it just heats all the house the one temperature now, we can't control our 3 zones separately (first world problems). We usually keep the bonus room doors closed and like 62 in there, since we aren't using it yet. There rest of the upstairs is a zone and then all of downstairs/main floor is a zone. I think this is all still under warranty. Components are 5 years, the compressor 10 years. It says our air exchanger system is 20 years.

While the hvac guy was here it started snowing. By early evening we had another 4 inches. The hvac guy didn't leave until 6:30, so I made a quick dinner from leftovers heated in the microwave. Later I went out to the shop for about a half hour and stained those boards for the closet with the new stain we got. It's nothing like our interior trim, but it will be fine for inside a closet.

On tap this afternoon is my second round of appointments. Mom's doctor appointment at 2pm and then I have my mammogram scheduled for 3:30. Then pick up a load of groceries. I'm working until we leave for the city at around 12:45. Since we won't be leaving the city until after 4 I'm sure we'll just stop at Wendy's and get some dinner from their drive thru. Last time dh tried a bite of my grilled chicken sandwich and said he should get that next time, instead of a burger. My bet is he'll still get a burger, LOL.

Our scale is out in the shop bathroom. I haven't weighed myself in probably a few months. Last time I did is also the time I was just starting to cut down on sugar in my diet and I was sure not happy with the scale. Even though I feel like I've really cut down on sugar every day, I haven't really felt (clothes wise) like I've lost anything, but haven't felt like I gained either. Well, when I was out in the shop Sunday staining boards, I used the bathroom and decided to weigh myself. This was with a sweater and a coat and shoes, LOL. I have lost about 6 pounds, so I was pleased with that. At least gives me some motivation to keep working on it.

Dh had told the hvac guy if it works out that he wants to come this afternoon (while we are gone) that is fine. Dh leaves the garage side door unlocked and he can get into the house that way. We would totally trust him. He's worked for the hvac owner a long time and a really good guy.

In additional good news, my side job boss sent me an email and said she wants to pay me my regular amount thru March now and then start the hourly amount in April. Nice!I get to budget one more month of my normal pay, I wasn't expecting.

Monday, March 6, 2023

Thermostat troubles

I'm having "fun" this morning trying to figure out why our thermostat isn't working. It's one of those smart things with a little computer screen that we're too dumb to figure out. Some alert code about it not communicating because it lost communication with a system component. Dh has the HVAC owner's cell and has texted him many times in the past several years if we have an issue. So, when dh got up this morning I told him that there was a problem and a code "31" and had printed out the page with that code info, but it basically says to call the HVAC company. We had a same/similar issue a year or so ago and dh texted or called him and he told dh what to do. Something just had to get reset.

DH says well you'd better call them. I'm like can't you just text owner, like you always have? Apparently not. He's butthurt because he tried to text him to ask him about something a month or so ago and he didn't respond back. OMG. One time, out of how many? So, I called the office phone number and of course got a recording. Their office lady did call me back pretty quickly and told us to restart the power on the furnace and it should reset everything in about 5-10 minutes. Well, once it was done doing that it came up with a new error code number. So, I called her back and had to leave another message, but it's been about a half hour and haven't heard back. Frustrating and annoying. DH is being frustrating and annoying, too. He gets down into our crawlspace, where the furnace is, and asks "did she say if we need to leave it off for a few seconds before turning it back on?" I just said, she didn't say and I didn't know to ask. (insert rolling eyes). Why she hasn't called back or had the owner or his tech assistant call us, who knows. Finally, after 2 hours of leaving a message I texted the HVAC lady and she eventually texted back, sorry she got swamped and will call me in a few minutes. That was an hour and 15 minutes ago.

She finally called back and they will have to send their service tech out to fix it - either tomorrow or Wednesday, she'll let me know when she finds out his schedule when he gets back at the end of the day.

I spent 2-3 hours staining boards, yesterday. Easy enough. I'd rather do that than paint any day. The snag we ran into is the boards he got for the closet shelves. They are pine. The stain in our house for doors and trim is "Golden Pecan", except it's all stained on knotty alder. Golden Pecan on pine looks like a washed out natural color. So, during my lunch break we went back into the lumber store and the guy helped me try to find a stain that would look like golden pecan on pine. No luck. Everything looks brown or red. We just ended up deciding to go with a light brown stain.  The guy at the lumber & paint store took about 6 or 7 different Minwax stains and made strips on our board of pine. None of them look like what is on the can when you use pine wood. Good to know. 

The HVAC lady just called and the tech finished his afternoon job early so he is heading out our way now, so that is good. He actually doesn't live that far from us, so it's not too far out of his way home anyway.

Sunday, March 5, 2023

Weekend to-do's

Two things got accomplished yesterday. I made the cake later morning. It looked to be a sunny day and dh said "oh I was thinking of going to the lumber store, but you're making cake now so I guess not". I said it will be done in about 30 min...."but then the lumber store will be closed by the time we get there". They used to close at noon on Saturdays (small town) but I reminded him since the new owner took over they stay open until 4pm on Saturdays. So, we went in and he got some of the lumber and I picked out a can of wood stain that is close as we could get to what we used before. What we used before was leftovers from the house build and apparently that stain color is no longer being made. He figured that the big beams he needs would have to be ordered and yes, they will order them on Monday and probably have them here Wednesday. The guy also said he could deliver them for free if dh didn't want to come in to get them. Thankfully lumber prices are much more back to normal now, another reason dh was waiting. The $400 we spent in lumber yesterday was 3x (or more) that a year or two ago. A sheet of OSB had gotten up to $120. Now it's $20.

I guess be careful what I wish for because guess what I get to do with my day today? Stain boards LOL. He also got boards so he can at least put some shelves up in our master closets and then we can get some rods hung up. He got some nice sanded plywood and then he will add trim to the front to make it look more finished. This is how he had done the guest bedroom closets and our coat closet in the entryway.

And then I'll talk him into making me some shelves on my side of the closet LOL. 

For the first time in a good 4 or 5 days,  I did not get a call (or I should say callS) from my mom yesterday. I'm hoping/assuming they did not give her that medication on Friday evening and maybe she was less confused yesterday. I will trying to give her a call today and see how she's doing.

Has anyone read the "Kay Scarpetta" series of books by Patricia Cornwell? I started reading them years and years ago and have always enjoyed them, expect for the last few have not been as good and then read one a few weeks ago (2nd to last in the series) and it was awful. But, her latest one became available for me to borrow the ebook so I gave it a go and it's really good. Much more like she has always written and I've been hard to put it down. I don't know how many she's written in the series, a lot, so had just chalked it up to she's run out of writing material about the character by now.

I came across a video on how to clear out your firestick from apps staying open in the background. Apparently when you open an app it never really closes and uses up processing speed. I had 21 apps open and "forced closed" them all and nope, didn't help a dang bit. Tried to watch a show I had recorded and had to try to restart 3 times and finally gave up and went back to my book.

We now have 13 turkeys stopping by to visit. Those toms sure are rude to the hens. They tolerate them with them, but barely. Two of them were putting on a display yesterday morning. Excuse the window glare. I was taking this from my office window upstairs.

Happy Sunday. I guess I need to dig out my "painting" clothes.

Saturday, March 4, 2023


OMG! I get the mail yesterday and there is a statement from the pharmacy that the m/c place uses to fill mom's prescriptions now. I'm looking over the list of meds and prices and they have Donepezil/Aricept listed on there as filling! Her doctor prescribed that last June and she was on it for only about10 days and SOOO off the charts confused that I messaged her doctor and she said to take her off of it. At one point, months later, when I was reviewing her chart online, I marked that med as discontinued, as it was still on there. And then, when I had her into the dr not too long ago I reminded them AGAIN that no, she isn't taking that med, when the nurse reviewed her list of meds with me. Why they couldn't mark it as no longer taking/being prescribed I don't know. Just careless and negligence. What if that had been some med she had had a bad allergic reaction to or something more serious?

But, they sent this med with the list of meds to fill at the pharmacy so mom's been taking it since I moved here there! And here I've been thinking it's just the big change/move that's got extra confused. No, it's that stupid medication. Probably why she's sundowning so bad again. I called the nurses/med desk at memory care to let them know I don't want her taking it, that the orders for it was a mistake. She said they will stop it and also would be good if I could get the doctors office to fax over a discontinue order. I called the dr office and they are supposed to fax that over to both the m/c and the pharmacy. In all the paperwork I had to fill out to move mom there, I had to list all her meds and dosages. That med was not listed, of course, so you'd think they would have compared it and at least asked why this med was filled, when it wasn't on my list I said she was taking.

GRRR! It will be very interesting to see how she does after getting off that med now. Hopefully this extra sundowning and confusion she's been having will reduce back to her normal. Geesh!!!

Friday, March 3, 2023

Let's eat cake

Mom is apparently realizing more she has a phone LOL. She called me at 11:15 yesterday and seemed happy, but I could tell she wasn't quite all there memory wise. She asked me if I was married. Then she called back a few minutes later and said she forgot to ask me - I can check on her bank account right? She just wanted to make sure everything was ok and I said yes, I check on it all the time and it's all good and balanced. She said thank you, she appreciates that I take care of it. Then she tried me a couple of times between 3:30 and 4 but I was in a work meeting and I figure unless it's a call from the nurses desk where she lives, it's not an emergency. 

I mentioned the other day, back when I first set up her phone, I decided to turn the label over, so she didn't see uncles name there next to a button. I just put my name on that side. I didn't want her calling him until she's more settled. Well I guess she was just pressing buttons yesterday, haha, and because he's still programmed in there with a button, she did call him. This was around the time she called me twice (or actually it was 3 tries) between 3:30 and 4. He texted me that evening that she called him and that she told him she was at the casino gambling! She used to do that a lot. I replied well at least she thinks she's somewhere she used to enjoy being at ;)

Then she just now called me at 8:45am. Said she's not feeling well. I said ok, did you let the nurse know and she said yes, I think they were going to call you (no one has yet) then she said she did eat something and was going to sit in her chair. The good part is she never remembers for very long if she doesn't feel good. And of course if it was something serious, the nurse would call me. If she was still living at her previous place, I'd be sitting here worried/wondering how sick she was and what to do. Now I can let them handle it. She did ask if I was coming to see her and I just said yes, I'll be coming and she said ok. I didn't say it's not until next Tuesday, when she has her dr. appt ;)

And she just called again, now 9:45. She wanted to know if/when I was coming? I just said well I'm working today, but was going to see how you are doing first...she said "oh I'm fine now" (and she sounded fine) so she said I didn't need to come today and I just said again, I'll be in in a few days.

If she calls again in the next few hours, I'll probably just let it go to voicemail this time. As always, I start my blog post before I start work in the morning, but never seem to get it finished up and keep coming back to it, when I get a few minutes.

I couldn't get onto my Firestick at all last night, so I couldn't even try to delete the app and reinstall it. I'm going to keep an eye out for a sale. Amazon seems to have them every so often and for now I'll just watch it from my ipad. I don't want to pay full price for one, when I know they put them on sale every so often. 

At least it's Friday, right? DD is the one who is actually sick with a bug. She started to feel crummy the afternoon before her flight home from the work trip. She got home late Wednesday evening and she just worked from home yesterday. Just has a bit of a temperature and really tired, but no other symptoms. Today she just decided to use a sick day and is going to get rested up and try to sleep it off.

My plans this weekend include making a cake. I need cake and ice cream, LOL.

Thursday, March 2, 2023

Another call, baby steps, expenses and Firesticks

Mom called again yesterday, a little before lunch. She's still confused, it sounds like. Unsure where she is. Plus, for some reason she could hardly hear me, though I could hear her fine, so I'm not sure what was up with that. When I answered she said oh I pushed this button on this thing and got you. I said yep! Then she asked if I knew where she was? I wasn't quite sure how to answer, so I just said yes, you are in (city name). She said ok and this is where I live? yes. But you could tell she was confused, plus she kept saying she couldn't hear me when I'd answer, so then said she's glad she got to talk to me and she'll let me go.

I'm glad to be having her doctor appointment, next Tuesday, to get established with the doctor they use at her facility. But, I'm sure I'll end up disappointed with the doctor, just as I am with most all doctors. But overall, I'm sure this doctor will much more convenient then where I was taking her before, plus this doctor is a geriatrician.

Dh finally seems to be making progress out of the planning stage of building the lofts in his shop to the actual "doing" stage. He ordered a bunch of bolts and screws yesterday (he does shop online to find the best deal, at least) and a tool he'll need (he found one ebay for about $50 less than regular stores). As long as there is no snow this morning (none yet) he said he will probably go into town to the lumber store and get some of the lumber needed to get started. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. Plus, he's about to get put in Facebook jail, LOL, so he's going to need something else to do, haha. 

Ok, it's March now, I'm at least ready for some warmer days, like in the 50's LOL....or even 40's. Nothing like that on the horizon yet. 

I'm still doing my little expenses spreadsheet to track my variable expenses each month. I budget $600 a month for groceries/personal care/household supplies. In January I spent $454, in February $641. I think I need a couple more months to get my monthly average tied down. I did create a separate category for pets (which includes the chickens). I don't have a budget, but sort of have always included it in my $600 groceries/household. In Jan I spent about $50 on pets. February was $243, but $150 of that was the vet bill and $93 was stocking up on 2-3 months of chicken feed/scratch/bedding. House maintenance in January was $287, in Feb it was $0. We spent $0 on clothing both months. Gas was about the same both months, right around $160. Gas was more than I thought I was spending per month, but I also feel like we had quite a few extra trips both months, taking/picking me up at airport, same with dd. Lots of extra trips in for my mom. We'll see if it goes back to my normal $80 a month budget.

Eating out (drive thru and restaurants) was about $150 each month. Both months we had a restaurant visit (vs the normal fast food stop), in January for our anniversary and in Feb we took dd out to dinner after we picked her up from the airport.

My firestick for the tv is still giving me lots of issues, so I guess I'm going to have to order a new one. I had to reset it like 3 times in 45 minutes while trying to watch a show last night. Same thing the night before. Kind of annoying that they don't seem to last too long. But, I just had a thought - maybe it's the Youtube tv app giving me issues and not the firestick....that's about what I watch 90% of the time, but I guess when it's giving me issues (freezing and saying not connected to wifi) I should see if I have any problems watching Netflix or Prime or another app for awhile. I think tonight I'll try deleting the app and adding it back, and test other apps on the firestick before I order a new one.