Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Today's Update - 28 Apr 2015

(This is my Confederate Jasmine hedge along the front of my yard.
It is just full of blooms and smells divine.)

My day has been busy but what day isn't lately?  LOL.  Today, in addition to playing catch up from Monday's work that didn't get finished I've been looking around the house trying to decide what I can do to make things less crowded for my parents.  I might have a month to prepare but it is a busy month with the school year coming to a close, the sports leagues ending for the semester, and getting ready for the kids to go away to camps.  I need to grab the help to get me through while I have it which means getting organized as soon as possible.

First on the list is the garage.  It is a garage but not really.  Mostly it is storage space for filing cabinets, school stuff, food preps and miscellaneous other stuff that is in transition from its former space to the new space where it belongs.  Nice way of saying it gets junked up on occasion and that's about the size of it right now.  It isn't bad-bad but it's usually better than it is at the moment.

Next comes deciding who is going to be switching bedrooms.  We'll probably get our middle daughter a new mattress and have my parents sleeping in there.  She can use her brother's room while he is gone for much of the summer ... he's going to be a counselor at the Winshape camps for two months.  He's my landscaper and all around mule so losing him for two months, right when things are turning so screwy, is going to be tough.  But he needs the chance to get out into the world before he is stuck in the claustrophobic demands of grad school.

I had hopes of using his bedroom as a temporary office for me but that's off the table now which means reconfiguring my workspace yet again.  I didn't pick up some wifi extenders so signal reception will be better but again, that's going to require a little bit of reconfiguring as my current desk is going multipurpose so the girls can help scan all of our old files and legal documents so I can get them on discs in case something happens to them out in the barn.

Like my jasmine in the picture above?  Sometimes I just go outside and walk along the fence line to enjoy the aroma.  Snapping turtle surprised me today and I did a funny little jig that made my neighbor and his dogs laugh.  But hey, you gotta be able to laugh when the opportunity presents itself.  Gopher tortoises are ok ... we've got one the kids have dubbed 007 ... but those snapping turtles can be downright mean and he was irritated because he had gotten turned around and lost his way and couldn't figure out where the water was.  I eventually carted him back to the pond and swamp but I did it by capturing him in a five-gallon bucket.  No way was I risking his not-so-friendly nature.

Did get some editing and writing accomplished.

Zombies Aren't Real ... Are They?!
A Bunch of Wild Thyme
Emi on the Caloosahatchee
Geek Inherit the Earth
Before I forget I want to thank Lilli for her outrageously yummy sounding pie recipe.  My mouth watered just imagining it.  I've already shared it with a neighbor who has promised to try it - nephew sent her some real maple syrup he cooked off himself.  I'm promised a piece of pie as soon as she does it.
No vids tonight.  Youtube isn't cooperating.  So enjoy the rest of your evening and thank you for reading!

Monday, April 27, 2015

Today's Update - 27 Apr 2015

(An iris from my own garden)
I believe I have finally gotten my life reasonably under control.  Note that I said reasonably and not totally under control.  My parents may be coming to live with us for a short while until my father has recovered enough that my mom can take care of him by herself.  If anyone is interested in a short synopsis of what has been going on you can read it here.  Basically my father is now in a wonderful rehab facility but he still hasn't really reached a point where he can completely participate in his own physical recovery; and his mental recovery from being intubated and sedated for so long will in many respects take nearly a year.  It isn't going to be a sprint but a marathon.
I mentioned before that if you are only prepping for high impact/low probability events you are missing the point.  You can prepare for the end of the world and you may never need it, but if you prep for things like illness, job loss or some loss of income, death in the family, disability, weather event, property damage, etc then the likelihood that you will almost assuredly need your preps is quite high.  I've been blessed to be able to help my parents on occasion up to this point.  But now the rubber is hitting the road and I'm discovering that those mental and financial preps that we've been making will allow us to come together as a family, face, as well as survive the stressful future in front of us.  There is some satisfaction in that but I can't totally focus on it yet because every day brings some small setback with the small triumphs.
I will do my best to post more regularly but I've had to drop everything several times to go help my mother who lives a few hours from us.  This situation as had hubby and I reviewing our own future plans.
First and foremost while the idea of going to live out in the middle of nowhere sounds wonderful on most days, the reality is that as we age it will become more and more difficult for us to do what it takes and one illness or accident could destroy everything we've worked for.  Along with that, we are gladder every year that when we built our "retirement home" that we may actually one day be able to live at year round, we did not put the bedroom upstairs.
Secondly I regularly re-evaluate the food storage I have but from here on out I am going to focus less on volume and filler and more on making every calorie count and ensuring that I'm able to not just put food on the table but that I'm able to put healthy food on the table.  To that end I'm going to stop allowing too much to interfere with my canning and food preserving.  If my parents do come to live with us for a while my mother and I are going to be giddy school girls and can to our hearts content.  My Excalibur is also going to be getting quite a work out.  I used to do a lot of that but over the past year work and other things have gotten in the way.  Well no more.  I don't want to look back and realize that I strayed from my appointed path and it is costing my family their health.
Lastly - at least for now - I'm accelerating my edible landscaping plans.  I'm accumulating the materials I need to build new raised beds ... including the fencing to keep the varmints out of them.  My older son has already, as a surprise for me, replanted several citrus trees.  They're small but by the time the ones that I have that are still viable need to be uprooted and burned, the new trees should be producing.
Life events like the ones my family is experiencing highlights what you are doing well ... and where you need improvement. 
I've managed to get some of my work-in-project additions added to:
Zombies Aren't Real ... Are They?!
A Bunch of Wild Thyme
Emi on the Caloosahatchee
(This is one of the stories I said I would be migrating over to blogger.  I had to copy it using he wayback machine and the formatting was a mess and I'm still finding flubs.  As I neaten a chapter I will post it.)
Geek Inherit the Earth
(ETA:  I managed to get the next section up.  It isn't quite as bad as I thought it was going to be.  Just needs a little editing, not a completing type over.)
I will be spending most of the remainder of the evening putting the last touches on "Geek".  Transferring it from my old computer to my new Spectre 360 created some weirdness.  The text is all there but when I go to paste it into blogger and hit preview it is like the text is hidden.  I'm hoping that copying the final chapters into a plain text document and then copying them to blogger will fix whatever the snafu is but I won't know until I try it.
Today's vids pretty much fly in the face of what I was saying earlier about getting healthy.  LOL.  However there was a very nice older lady sitting in the cafeteria at the rehab center and the staff was encouraging her to reminisce about her childhood.  She lived in Minnesota and Wisconsin as a child and she had fond memories of her parents making "tree syrup" and of the many ways her parents providing fun that wasn't "storebought".  Below are some vids that I found while researching some of the things that she spoke of.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Today's Update - 6 Apr 2015

I feel like a clock that has been wound too tight and is about to fly apart.  Too many things going on in my life and in the world and too many things not getting done in my life and in the world.  Sigh.

Left wrist is officially out of the brace.  I still have some mobility and pain issues but it is improving.  My right wrist - after a second x-ray - proved to actually have a minor fracture in one of the small bones.  I'm right handed so this is just all kinds of fun.

I'm in the brace on my right wrist for at least another week, possibly longer.  All I have to use on my right hand is my index finger.  It is very difficult to do any amount of typing yet without making the hand and arm sore.  The dictation program barely does what I need it to and still requires a lot of editing.  The swelling from the wrist injuries really aggravated the carpal tunnel I have.  So, I have to be careful. Ugh.

None of that is anything compared to waiting on the heart surgeon to see my father.  We hope to get some answers and a timeline for the triple by-pass and valve replacement tomorrow (Tuesday).  I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop ... like he desperately needs surgery to improve his quality of life but the surgeon saying the surgery is not going to happen because it will cut short his quantity of life.  Depending on the answers he gets from the doctor I may or may not post tomorrow night.  I will try but if my emotions are in the tank ... well I'm sure everyone understands.  I've had some very nice people tell me of their own experiences.  I truly appreciate it.  It makes me feel less alone in these feelings of near helplessness.

The only story addition I got up this evening is for Geek.  I'm used to typing at over 80 wpm (words per minute).  Having to use the dictation program, then transfer that to my word processor, then try and edit from there and finally copy and paste to blogger has slowed the process quite a bit.  With the one brace off it should speed things up a little but I still have to be careful not to over exert the wrists for a while; permanent damage is not the goal that's for sure.

The Geek Shall Inherit the Earth

Sorry there isn't more.  I may get something up earlier in the day tomorrow depending on my schedule.  Having someone come work on the chimney.  Stupid birds are in there again trying to build a nest.  The screening we did ourselves ultimately didn't work.  Time to call in the professionals.  I do not want to wake up again with a bird dive bombing me in the wee hours of the morning, followed closely by the cat and dog trying to catch the kamikaze as I flies around leaving gift cards of droppings.  Yuck.  Go ahead and laugh.  I did too but not until the next day when the trauma had faded away.  I'm thankful no one had a camera to get a picture of my face.  My husband's face was hysterical enough as a memory.  LOL

Enjoy and hopefully I'll have more in the coming days.