Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Much Better Monday

I am feeling much better, today; even have my voice back!  Still a bit hoarse, but at least I can talk!

It has been a very cloudy and overcast day, but it didn't rain.  I spent a quiet morning, having a cup of tea and checking on my cousin who had also come down with a cold and cough.  Apparently, she, too, has lost her voice!  I spoke with her mother, instead.  Aunt recounted how when my cousin and I were in pre-school together (this particular cousin is less than 4 months younger than I), she received a call saying my cousin was sick and when she went to pick up my cousin, she found me, too, seated next to my cousin in the nurse's office, because I had insisted on staying with my sick cousin.  I guess we cared about each other even when we were four years old.  :) 
My doctor's appointment was at 1:30 p.m.  I left the house shortly before 12:30 p.m.  Traffic was quite light and I got there in good time.  I had taken my book with me to read if there was a long wait like last time, but they called me in before my appointment time and I was actually out of there by 1:30 p.m.!  The doctor's visit went well.  He examined me, asked me what I thought, agreed with me that the inflammation looked better, and stated that I didn't need any additional antibiotics.  I am to return for a follow-up visit in 6 weeks; he wants me to wait until after that to schedule the mammogram. 

On the way home, I wanted to buy something for lunch (breakfast had been a banana), but I couldn't decide what I wanted; nothing sounded all that good.  I lost my appetite, last week, when I got sick and haven't quite recovered it, yet.  After I came home, however, I had some of the teriyaki beef bowl I had frozen, earlier, for my lunch.  Later, I aired out the house, took out the trash cans, and just relaxed.
Later, I felt like having a doughnut with my tea!  I thought long and hard about going to the nearby doughnut shop (there are actually two of them, each just three blocks away), but then, I knew it wouldn't taste good, so I didn't go to get one.  Just had a cup of tea, instead.  I watched news on TV in the evening and my neighbor called to check on me.  My aunt called again, too, and later, I texted with my cousin and video chatted with my daughter.  Dinner was a chicken sandwich followed by a fresh orange I had picked from my tree.

Today, I am grateful for:
- Feeling better and having my voice back
- A safe drive to the clinic and back
- The doctor's visit went well
- Aunt sharing anecdotes about my childhood
- Caring family and friends
Today, I spent $15 co-pay at the clinic and $2 for parking.

Tomorrow, I will see my primary care doctor.  The clinic called and confirmed the appointment, today.   If I feel up to it, I will also do a little grocery shopping, too.

How was your day?  Hope it was a good day. 

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Voiceless Sunday

I woke up feeling a lot better, this morning, but unfortunately, I have mostly lost my voice!  I suppose all that coughing strained my vocal chords.  But, it's not like I was going to give a public speech, or audition for a role in a lifetime, or anything like that, so, it is OK.  :)

I got up very early at one point, this morning, maybe around 5:00 a.m., when I heard it rain!  Yes, the sound of rain is still novel enough to wake me up!  But I resisted the urge to run to the window to verify it was really raining (seems like the first thing we here in So. California do when it rains!).  I fell asleep again, listening to the sound of the rain, and woke up again at 6:00 a.m.  I tried to go back to sleep, but I felt wide awake and wanted a cup of tea.  So, got out of bed, had a cup of tea, and replied to comments on my blog.  Later, I had a tuna sandwich and a fresh orange for breakfast.

I've had several phone calls this morning.  My aunt called to check on me and said her daughter, my cousin, has also come down with a cold and cough.  Cousin had been wanting to accompany me to the doctor's appointment, tomorrow, and I had been telling her it was not necessary as I didn't want her to get exposed to my germs and get sick, herself.  I'm sorry she's not well, but glad that it wasn't due to coming into contact with me!  My cousin gives piano lessons and a sick day means she's unable to teach and a loss of income for her, and I didn't want that to happen because of me.  After that, my neighbor called for our weekly Sunday morning chat.  Except I couldn't really chat this time without much of a voice, so we rang off after we exchanged greetings.  One of my friends called, too, to check on me.  Again, we spoke very briefly and I assured her that she didn't have to come to see me as I don't want her to catch anything from me. 

Then, my other cousin called me to say that the friend who hosted the prayer gathering had sent a plate of food home with her to give to me and that she'll bring it over later, on her way to church.  I had assumed as much when she didn't call or come by, last night.  It was probably quite late when she got home and she would have assumed I'd already be in bed.  She dropped it off around noon, and I called my friend to thank her.  She had sent me vegetable rice, with beef curry (at the top at 12 o'clock), shrimp, eggplant, potatoes, chicken curry, and an egg.  A lot of food and I keep seeing a smiley face on the egg! 

All of it was too much for me.  I served some of it to another plate and warmed it up for my lunch.  The first mouthful had me reaching for a glass of water!  I have been toning down on the amount of chili I usually add to my cooking and my friend makes authentic Sri Lankan food which is very hot and spicy!  I enjoyed what I ate, but I think I'll freeze the rest for my daughter - she loves really spicy food and she'll enjoy this, a lot.

I had hoped to take a nap in the afternoon, but I did some office work, instead, and it took me longer than I thought it would. 

Later in the evening, I watched the Academy Awards and video chatted with my daughter.  She had gone shopping, earlier in the afternoon, to buy some craft supplies she needed for the gifts she was making for her friends' birthdays.  The craft store is in an adjoining city and it is a bit of a bus ride there and back.  I have always worried about her traveling to and fro on her own, but certain recent events have made me feel even more nervous.  But she had a safe shopping trip, bought what she needed, and made her gifts, so all is well.   

Today, I am grateful for:

- Rain in the morning
- Feeling much better even if I lost my voice
- Daughter had a safe shopping trip
- My friend sending me a plate of food and my cousin bringing it over to me
- Family and friends calling to check on me

Tomorrow, I have a follow-up appointment with my radiation oncologist, in the early afternoon.  I am not planning on doing anything much, other than that, but trash cans need to be taken to the curb and the dishes ought to be done! 

How was your Sunday?  Did you have a good day?  What have you planned for Monday?  If anyone has made any monthly goals, how are you coming along with attaining those? 

Saturday, February 25, 2017

A Day Spent in Bed

I didn't sleep well, last night; kept waking up every hour or so until early morning and then, I finally fell asleep.  Woke up at 11:00 a.m. and had a cup of tea.  Replied to comments on my blog and spoke with my friend who called to check on me and with my aunt.  My cousin called too, to offer me a ride to the rosary prayer gathering tonight, but I told her I will not be going because I wasn't feeling well.  I also received a call from the friend who was hosting the rosary prayer gathering, to say she received my message and she's sorry I'm not well and can't attend; she said she will send me some dinner through my cousin.  I thanked her and told her not to worry, but she said it would be no trouble.

After that, I took two Tylenols and went to bed and slept all afternoon.  I didn't wake up until 7:30 p.m.!  I realized I hadn't eaten anything all day, so, once I got up, I opened a can of tuna and made myself a sandwich.  Dancer got a spoonful of tuna, too.  I opened my last can of coconut water to drink; I know I haven't been drinking enough water these past couple of days.  I hope I will feel better, tomorrow.

Today, I am grateful for:
- Being able to take it easy and rest
- A long afternoon nap
- Family and friends calling to check on me
- My friend offering to send me dinner
- Another dry, sunny day

It is supposed to rain, tomorrow.  I am not planning to go anywhere or do anything.  I do need to do the dishes, though. 

How was your day?  Are you having a fun weekend?

Friday, February 24, 2017

February Pantry Inventory

The last time I did a pantry inventory was in September of 2016, which is found here:

Today, I updated that inventory, to reflect the recent purchases of 60 lbs. of sugar and 24 cans of tuna.  Also, there was a very good comment about having sufficient storage space for stocking up.  I have sufficient space in my kitchen cabinets for the items I buy.  These pictures were taken today:

Storage for Tea, Coffee, Sugar, Hot Cocoa, etc.

Three of the bags of sugar are stored in this cabinet.  The shelves are adjustable if I need to fit in more.  I could move the top shelf a little higher to accommodate another bag of sugar on top of the bag on the 3rd shelf, for example.  The little white canister on the second shelf holds extra tea bags and there are two unopened boxes of tea behind it.  The other canister holds sugar and there are two unopened boxes of hot cocoa mix behind it.  The lower shelf is where I keep the canister of tea bags I use on a daily basis, the opened boxes of other teas which my daughter likes, the opened box of cocoa mix, pain relievers, etc.  All in easy access.  I might donate the coffee since I no longer drink coffee.

More Sugar, Jams, Chutneys, Cooking Oil and Sauces, and Ramen Noodles

A fourth bag of sugar is stored on the top shelf of this cabinet; there is room for another bag of sugar, next to it, if needed.  There are several jars of tomato chutney and three jars of jam stored on the shelf below.  The shelf below that has a canister of oatmeal, the box of cream of wheat, the box of corn meal, and a big jug of teriyaki sauce.  The lowest shelf has a bin with ramen noodles, a jar of chicken bouillon powder, cooking oil (vegetable and sesame), sauces (Worcestershire and soy) and a canister of salt.  This is my only bottle of vegetable oil; I will buy a new bottle when I am about half way through it, otherwise, it goes rancid before I can use it all up.  I also have an unopened jar of coconut oil in a different cabinet (which I didn't photograph because it is a bit of a mess and I didn't feel well enough to tidy it!).

I opened one of the bags of sugar and decanted most of it to a food storage container; what didn't fit in that container is stored in another similar container, and they are labeled and stacked one on top of the other in the cabinet I didn't photograph.  The bag of sugar for my daughter is also stored in that cabinet.

This is my main pantry cabinet:  

Canned Food Pantry

The very top shelf stores rarely used china and my souvenir thermos mug from a visit to Disney World in the winter of 1975 - it has a bicentennial design on it.  The blue and white Currier and Ives print china was bought from a thrift store for $.10 a piece, when I first came to this country.  There were six plates that were used until they eventually broke; I still use the set of bread and butter plates on an every day basis, and the three coffee cups.  What is stored up on the shelf are the soup plates, some tea cups and saucers, sugar and cream bowls (two of each).

The two jars of peanut butter I bought are stored on the second shelf up; all the cans of tuna are stored on the lowest shelf.  I opened a can of cream of chicken soup for my dinner, tonight, so this picture is already out of date!

Here's my updated pantry list:

Approx. 10 lbs. of long grain white rice ( a little less than 1/2 of a 25 lb. bag)
Approx. 5 lbs. of basmati rice (1/4 of a 20 lb. bag)
Approx. 2 lbs. of red rice (lightly polished)

6 x 1 lb. boxes of spaghetti (and 2 opened boxes that were decanted to a container)

1 can of Manwich sauce which could be used as pasta sauce if needed, I suppose

Flour/Pancake Mix/Cornmeal/Cream of Wheat/Oats:
5 lb. bag of all-purpose flour (in freezer)
1 box pancake mix
1 box cornmeal
1 box cream of wheat
1/2 container of rolled oats

1 can corned beef
3 cans mackerel
25 cans tuna in water (the 24 I bought plus 1 that was still in the cabinet)
1 jar fried dry fish (Sri Lankan food; there's an opened jar in the fridge, as well)

3 cans condensed milk
1 can coconut milk
5 cans cream of chicken
2 cans cream of mushroom
1 can cream of celery
9 packets of soup noodles
6 cans chicken broth
1 can vegetable bouillon powder (opened)
1 jar chicken bouillon powder (opened)

1 can sliced pears
2 cans sliced peaches
2 cans mandarin orange segments
2 cups applesauce(individual servings)

2x 64 oz. bottles apple juice

1 bottle mango drink
1 can coconut water

2 cans breadfruit
1 can garbanzo beans
2 cans pumpkin
2 cans red kidney beans
2 cans green peas
2 cans corn
dried mung beans and red lentils

Peanut Butter/Jam:
2 jars peanut butter
1 jar of homemade apple/pomegranate jam
2 jars of homemade lemon marmalade

60 lbs. white sugar
1/2 box powdered sugar (open)
1 lb. juggery (palm sugar)
open jar molasses
open jar honey
open bottle pancake syrup
open box of brown sugar
several bottles of palm treacle (some opened; some not)

2 cake mixes (chocolate)
1 cake mix (yellow)
1 cookie mix (snickerdoodle)

1 box cook and serve chocolate pudding mix
1 box flan mix
1 box instant pistachio pudding

2 packets pectin
2 envelopes yeast
1 bottle canola oil (opened)
1 bottle coconut oil
Open bottles of condiments, cooking sauces, etc.
Several packages of cereal (most opened)

I really need to clean out the other cabinet where I store the cereal, opened boxes of pasta, crackers, etc. Also, I could probably do with a couple of cans of chicken and maybe some green beans, etc., in my pantry.  I certainly don't have enough stocked up for a year, but I'd like to have enough to see me through a major earthquake, when grocery stores will be closed and food deliveries will be uncertain due to road and infrastructure damage.  What I'd really like to do is put together some well-planned pantry meals.  


Today, I haven't felt too well.  The cough has settled in my chest and I am thinking it was a mistake to have gone grocery shopping, yesterday.  But no fever, although I took a Tylenol for the general aches and pains. 

Today, I am grateful for:
- the abundance and blessings of a fairly well stocked pantry
- having enough space to store everything
- being able to work from home, especially when I am feeling ill
- a rest on the sofa in the afternoon
- my gardener friend mowing my back yard for me.

The monthly rosary prayer meeting is being held at a friend's house, tomorrow night, but I called and excused myself, since I don't feel well enough to attend and don't want to infect anyone else, either.  One of my aunts, a cousin, and a friend called to check on me, although I told them to stay away so they don't come down with what I have.  I am hoping I'll be well enough, next week, when my daughter comes home for a visit, as I certainly don't want her to get sick.

How was your Friday?  What do you have in your pantry?  Where do you store pantry items you buy in bulk?

Thursday, February 23, 2017

February Grocery Shopping - Week 3

February 23 Groceries

It was a sunny day, today, crisp and clear, with a high of 59F.  I decided to go grocery shopping in the afternoon, to two stores, to stock up on this week's deals.

Store number 1, first, for the sugar, frozen fish, and a bag of generic cat food while I was there:

6 x 10 lb. bags sugar, $4.79@ = $28.74
1 bag (24.5 oz) frozen fish fillets (12 pieces) = $3.99
1 bag cat food = $8.99 + $.79 tax = $9.78
Total spent = $42.51

But cat food is not included in my grocery budget, only people food (cat food and pet supplies are included in a different "pet care" budget), so, amount spent on groceries = $42.51 - $9.78 = $32.73

February 23 Receipt 1

60 lbs. of sugar is a lot, isn't it?  I will give one bag to my daughter to take back with her.  The rest will come in handy when I make my jams and chutneys, later this year.

Oops, I forgot to include the fish fillets in the picture, above (I had put it in the freezer as soon as I came home):

Frozen Fish Fillets

Then, I went to store number 2 to stock up on the tuna and peanut butter.  Dancer shares a can of tuna with me and we go through a can a week.  I decided to buy 24 cans at once and it will last us a good six months.  They have a "sell by" date of December 2017, so nothing will spoil before I use them up.  I also bought a container of chocolate powder, two jars of peanut butter, a container of milk, some bananas, and another bag of cat food (which is not included in my grocery totals):

1 can chocolate powder = $2.99
2 jars peanut butter, $.99@ = $1.98
1 lb. bananas @ $.59/lb = $.59
1 pint milk = $.99
24 cans tuna @$.50 = $12.00
Total spent = $18.55

February 23 Grocery Receipt 2

Total spent on groceries today = $32.73 + $18.55 = $51.28

I was able to stock up on the sugar and tuna because I had money in the grocery budget that was carried over from January's grocery budget.

February grocery budget = $75 + $20.53 carried over from January = $95.53

Spent to date = $10.11 + $24.69 + $51.28 = $86.08
Balance remaining = $9.45

That will be enough for 10 lbs. of chicken drumsticks (at $.49/lb), some zucchini, carrots, potatoes, apples and pears or a small papaya, and maybe even a packet of pita bread ($.50) from the ethnic store on Tuesday.

I had pancakes and canned corned beef (sauted with onions and chili powder) for brunch, today.  A glass of chocolate milk after I came back from grocery shopping.  Leftover pancakes and the last of the corned beef for dinner, along with some sliced cucumber and an orange. 

I did some office work, today, and did a load of laundry.  Was able to air out the house in the afternoon and I spoke on the phone with one of my cousins and an aunt.

Today, I am grateful for:
- Being able to work from home
- Being able to stock up on sugar and canned tuna
- A sunny day
- Feeling a bit better
- Phone conversations with aunt and cousin

How was your Thursday?  How are you coming along with your grocery shopping this month?  How do you budget for stocking up? 

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Wednesday's Update

I woke up feeling just a little bit better, this morning.  There was a bit of a sinus pressure headache, but that wore off later in the day.  The scratchy sore throat is more of a cough, now.  I gargled with warm salt water, again, in the morning, and made myself some fresh lemonade to sip during the day.  I think, another day or so and I should be feeling fine, again. 

Last night, before I went to sleep, I put some mung beans to soak.  This morning, I rinsed them in a couple of changes of water and boiled them, with just a bit of salt for my brunch.  I had them with a spicy onion relish, known as "katta sambol", which is made by grinding onions, dry red chilies, flakes of Maldive fish (a type of dried fish), salt and lime/lemon juice to taste.  I cheated, though, and didn't make my own, but helped myself from a jar of premade sambol that I had bought from the Sri Lankan store:

Breakfast: Mung Beans and Onion Relish
I didn't measure the amount of mung beans I put to soak last nigh; maybe about half a cup?  There's enough leftover for at least two more meals. 

It was cloudy, today, but it didn't rain.  I did some office work, went for a little bit of a walk to get some fresh air, opened a window to air out the house, picked some fresh lemons and a couple of oranges from the garden, and took a nap in the afternoon.

Freshly Picked Oranges and Lemons

Dinner was one of the portions of teriyaki beef from the freezer, followed by a fresh orange for dessert.

The weekly grocery sales ads were delivered in today's mail and I went through them to see what's on sale.  I routinely receive the sales ads from about 10 grocery stores in my neighborhood.  However, I generally frequent only two or three of the stores.  It works out best for me.  So, the first thing I do is toss the ads from the stores I don't go to for whatever reason.  But, today, I decided to take a picture of what I usually receive and, of course, someone decided he needed to be in the picture, too:

This Week's Grocery Ads

"What are you doing, Mummy?  Dancer help you look for deals."

"Any Tuna on Sale, Mummy?"

"Studying grocery ads is tiring, Mummy; Dancer rest":

Tired Kitty

One store is having 10 lb. bags of cane sugar on sale for $4.79, which is a good price.  My cut off point for sugar is $.50/lb. and I have actually come to the end of my stock of sugar, so, this is a good time to buy some and stock up.  The ad didn't specify a limit, so I am hoping to buy several bags and I'll be able to share some of it with my daughter, too.  Flour is also on sale for this price, but I don't need flour.  They have frozen battered fish fillets for $3.99/18-24 oz. bags depending on variety, and I've found these to be a good item to have on hand for a quick dinner, so I might buy a bag of that.  They also have canned tuna on sale for $.69/5 oz. can, but a different store (in the opposite direction from my house) is having canned tuna on sale for $.50/can, so I might go there, instead, for the tuna.  

The store with the tuna for $.50 per can is also having store brand peanut butter on sale for $.99/16 oz. jar.  I at at the end of my current jar of peanut butter, and this is a good stock up price; I shall probably buy two jars - one creamy and one chunky.  They also have pasta on sale for $.49/12-16 oz.  packet, but one must buy six participating items to get it at that price (won't be a problem as it can be six of the same item), but I just opened two new boxes of pasta and there are six unopened boxes in the cupboard, so I think I'll give the pasta a miss. 

Finally, I think I shall make a trip to one of my favorite ethnic grocery stores.  They tend to have the best prices on fresh produce.  This week's advertised specials include, large Granny Smith apples for $.39/lb., Gala apples for $.49/lb., papaya for $.49/lb., Bosc pears for $.49/lb. ($.99/lb. at another store), grapes for $.79/lb (priced $.99/lb and $1.99/lb. at the other stores, this week), zucchini for $.39/lb., carrots for $.33/lb., red onions for $.29/lb., and red potatoes for $.33/lb.  On Tuesday, they will have chicken drumsticks on sale for $.49/lb., which will be a one-day only, special.  I have a doctor's appointment on Tuesday, but I can swing by afterwards, for the chicken, if I feel up to it. 

"You study grocery ads, Mummy; Dancer take a nap":


Today, I am grateful for:
- A day without rain
- Fresh lemons and oranges from the garden
- Being able to work from home
- Feeling a little better
- A phone call from my friend 

Tomorrow will be another relatively quiet day.  I will work on office stuff and then, depending on how I feel, maybe do some grocery shopping. 

How was your day?  Do you, too, go through the weekly sales ads to see what's on sale each week and then, stock up or plan your weekly meals based on the week's deals?  Do you stick to one or two particular stores or do you shop around for the sales?

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Still Under the Weather

I am still feeling under the weather, today.    Scratchy throat and inflamed sinuses, I think, but no fever.  I didn't do anything much, today.  I had emailed my supervisor before I went to sleep, last night, explaining I wasn't feeling well and wasn't planning to come into the office, today.  So, I knew I didn't have to wake up early and call in.  However, I did wake up a couple of times, early in the morning,; but, each time, I went back to sleep and slept in until past 11:00 a.m.  Once I was up, however, I contacted my supervisor, because she had sent me a very sweet email in response to mine.  I have arranged with her to work from home this entire week.
Today, I stayed home, gargled with warm salt water, kept the heater on all day, and took an afternoon nap.  It rained again, in the morning and in the evening.  In between, in the afternoon, I brought in the trash can and collected my mail.  I received the reminder for jury duty, which I had postponed until June.  I think a reminder in February for a June service date is a bit too early, but I've kept the document in a fairly central spot and I marked it on my calendar, too.   

I didn't do any housework, today, other than putting away the laundry and doing the dishes (will do the litter box before I go to bed).  So, just a very quiet, restful day.
I cooked some rice and had that with the last of the chicken curry for lunch.  I thawed and reheated the last packet of beef pot roast I had in the freezer for my dinner, with a slice of bread and butter, and the rest of the blackberries for dessert.  There's enough pot roast leftover for tomorrow's lunch or dinner, and leftover rice, too.  Since I didn't go grocery shopping this past weekend, I am eating from the fridge, freezer, and pantry.  I will need to go grocery shopping later this week, however, for fresh produce! 

Today, I am grateful for:
- Being able to take the day off from work today
- Being able to arrange to work from home the rest of the week
- Being able to sleep in, in the morning
- An afternoon nap
- More rain for the garden!
I'm really not making any plans for tomorrow, except doing office work.  Everything else will depend on how well I feel and can wait for another day or two without any problems.

How was your Tuesday?  What are your plans for Wednesday?

Feeling a Bit Under the Weather

It didn't rain, as such, today, but it was drizzly, cloudy, and grey.    I woke up feeling tired and my sinuses are bothering me.  I've a bit of a scratchy throat, as well.  I don't know if I am coming down with a cold or sinus infection (no fever, though; I checked), or this is just the after effects of the Prednisone, or allergies due to the rain (more mold spores, perhaps?).  Also, the Prednisone had made me feel very hungry over the weekend, and I ate quite a bit, and it raised my blood sugar quite high.  Higher than it has been in quite a while.  My doctor had warned me that one of the side effects of Prednisone is raised blood sugar levels, but it still caused me to be a bit concerned.  As a result, I just took it very easy, today, and rested.
I had planned to go grocery shopping and maybe shop for elastic at the fabric store, today, but  I decided not to go grocery shopping or any other shopping.  I have enough food in the fridge, freezer, and pantry to get me through the week, without needing to buy anything.  And I can hold off on clothing alterations for another week or two.
I lay on the sofa under a knitted blanket and read for awhile and then, took a nap in the afternoon.  It helped.  Also, the sugar levels were down to my new normal levels, by evening, so I felt better about that, too. 

After I woke up from my nap, I had a cup of tea and then, I did a load of laundry.  After that, I cleaned out the fridge (had to toss a couple of items - a partial head of lettuce and some broccoli) and emptied the waste baskets and kitchen trash.  Then, I took out the trash can to the curb.  I couldn't move the yard waste bin, though.  My gardener friend had filled my can with yard waste from my nextdoor neighbor's garden when he did our gardens last week, saying her can wasn't enough to contain all her yard waste.  He told me he will be coming by to move her trash cans for her and will move my yard waste bin at the same time.  Well, I don't know if he moved her trash cans for her or not, but my can hadn't been moved.  When I couldn't move it, myself, I called him and left a message.  He called me back about 9:00 p.m., apologizing and saying he forgot about it.  Well, I guess it won't get collected this week, then, and will have to wait until next week.  Not a big deal, in the grand scheme of things.
I had the last of the string hoppers for brunch, today.  Dinner was the bowl of beef and vegetable soup my friend had given me, yesterday, followed by fresh blackberries.  Then, I did the dishes and wiped the kitchen counters and video chatted with my daughter.
Now, I am seated here with a cup of coriander tea, which is our panacea for colds and coughs, etc.  It is made by boiling coriander seeds, letting it steep for a bit, and then, straining the resulting tea.  Sometimes, we add some ginger to it, too, for added benefits.  My daughter loves coriander tea; I don't much care for it, but I will drink it when I feel a cold coming on.   
I had been planning to go to the office, tomorrow, but I don't think I should if I am getting a cold or sinus infection.  Better for me to stay home and rest.  So I sent an email to my supervisor, just now, to let her know that I will either work from home or take a day of sick leave, depending on how I feel, tomorrow.  We are required to inform our supervisors prior to the start of our work day, if we are calling in sick, etc.  Right now, the understanding I have with my supervisor is, if I am not in the office, I will be working from home.  But, if I feel I won't be able to work from home because I don't feel well, then, I call or email to let her know and I take sick time off or vacation time off to cover my time.  
Today, I am grateful for:
- A restful day
- A nap on the sofa
- Not having fever
- More fresh oranges from the tree (two had fallen due to the rain and winds and I picked them up, today) 
- Being able to stay home from the office, tomorrow, too.

Monday's To Do List:
- Tidy the bedroom
- Do a load of laundry - DONE
- Try to finish the paperwork and filing
- Grocery shopping
- Shop for elastic?
- Clean out the fridge - DONE
- Empty the trash bins - DONE
- Take the trash cans to the curb - DID ONE

Tuesday's To Do List:
- Office work
- Tidy the bedroom
- Paperwork/filing
- Bring trash can in
- Put away dried laundry, washed dishes, etc.

How was your Monday?  What are your plans for the rest of the week?

Monday, February 20, 2017

Not So Sunny Sunday

Well, I finally went to sleep at 5:00 a.m., on Sunday morning and slept till 10:00 a.m.  I woke up once around 8:30 a.m., but went back to sleep.  It had rained earlier in the morning, before I woke up.  The ground was all wet.  It remained cloudy and grey although the rain had ceased and the sun tried to shine through the clouds.

I had a quiet, relaxed morning, reading blogs, commenting, responding to comments left on mine, etc.  Brunch was some of the leftovers that were sent home with me from last night's memorial dinner:  it is a type of homemade rice flour noodles, we call "indiappa" which is also known as "string hoppers" in English.

Indiappa/String Hoppers with Shrimp Curry and Sambols

To make the string hoppers, rice flour is mixed with warm water and salt to make a soft dough which is then pressed through a wooden mold (although there are metal ones, as well, now) that has a disc with holes at the bottom.  As the mold is pressed down, the dough comes out in strands and are mounded on small round woven wicker mats, about 3-inches in diameter (although, these days, there are plastic mats, as well).  Once the mounds of dough strands are about 1/2 inch high, the strands of dough are cut off and another string hopper is made on a different mat.  The mats with the strands of dough are then steamed until cooked (no longer sticky and pasty); it takes about 5* minutes or so for them to steam.  They are then removed from the mats and served with curries and spicy relishes we call "sambols".  On the plate above, I have some coconut sambol (light orange to the left) and onion sambol (dark brown on the top right).  A gravy made with coconut milk, turmeric, onions, and spices, called "kiri hodi" or milk gravy, has been poured over the string hoppers to moisten them.  String hoppers are often eaten for breakfast and as dinner; but rarely as lunch.  I, however, will eat them at any time, because I like them.

In the late afternoon/early evening, I attended the memorial mass for my friend.  I was able to meet one of my friends at the church, that I hadn't seen since before Christmas.  She is my late friend's niece and her daughters are friends with my daughter; it was nice to see her and one of her daughters, today.

After the service was over, I offered a ride home to another one of my friends who was there.  Her husband had dropped her and their daughter off at church and gone back home; my offer of a ride home meant she didn't have to call him to come and pick her up.  She invited me in and gave me soup and a plate of dinner to bring home with me!

It started to rain just as I left my friend's home and has been raining ever since.  But not as strongly as it did on Friday.

After I came home, I had a cup of tea, washed the dishes, scrubbed the kitchen sink and dish drainer, and watered the indoor plants.  I had planned to tidy my bedroom today, but I didn't; I will do it tomorrow.

Today, I am grateful for:
- Being able to attend my friend's memorial mass
- Meeting up with more friends
- My friend giving me dinner to bring home
- More rain for the garden (but not too much!)
- Video chatting with my daughter and having a really nice discussion about various things.

Sunday's To Do List:
- Sleep in!  (It is 4:20 a.m. as I type this; prednisone keeps me awake!) - DONE; till 10:00 a.m.
- Paperwork/Filing - DID SOME
- Tidy my bedroom - Monday
- Attend Memorial Mass (look up directions to church) - DONE
- Water the indoor plants - DONE
- Do the dishes - DONE; Scrubbed the sink and dish drainer, too
- Clean the litter box - Will do after I post this
- Do a load of laundry - Monday
 - Rest! - DONE

Monday is a holiday, so I have the day off from work.  I am not planning to do too much - just a bit of grocery shopping and some housework.  However, I might go to the fabric store for more elastic!  I can't adjust any more waist bands until I buy some wide elastic.

Monday's To Do List:
- Tidy the bedroom
- Do a load of laundry
- Try to finish the paperwork and filing
- Grocery shopping
- Shop for elastic?
- Clean out the fridge
- Empty the trash bins
- Take the trash cans to the curb

Today's spending was a donation to the church.  

How was your Sunday?  What have you planned for Monday?  Are you having a holiday and a day off from work, too, or is it a regular work day for you?

* edited to change string hopper steaming time to 5 minutes, not 15!

Sunday, February 19, 2017

No Rain Saturday

I really need to come up with some catchy blog post headings, other than the days of the week!

Although yesterday's weather forecast said it might rain today (Saturday), it didn't rain.  It was cloudy and it did drizzle a little bit for a few minutes in the late afternoon/early evening, but the sun tried to shine through the clouds and there was no rain, as such.  The puddles from yesterday have all drained off although there's debris all over the roads and there is a downed tree in the next block.

I felt a little tired in the morning, so I relaxed and took it easy.  Finished up a bit of office work that I didn't get to on Friday, read and commented on blogs, replied to comments left on mine, etc.

For brunch, I made more Indian-style cream of wheat (or uppuma):

Indian-style Cream of Wheat

I flavored it slightly differently, this time, using some spicy relish a friend had made and given me, and peanuts instead of cashews.  I made enough for two meals, so I have leftovers for Sunday.  I ate the last of the bananas, afterwards. 

Then, I read more blogs and came across Nathalie's pictures of her breakfast of smoked salmon eggs Benedict and fried potatoes, and it looked so good, I felt hungry, even though I don't like smoked salmon or eggs Benedict.  Then, I saw the pictures of the pastries and cookies she had posted and I drooled!  Even though I knew I wouldn't actually enjoy eating any of the pastries, they looked so good!   Finally, I felt so hungry, I had to go and fix myself a big bowl of salad!

Not-Quite-Pastry Salad!

Red leaf lettuce, a grated carrot, about a third of a cucumber, some shredded roast chicken breast, and Catalina dressing.  I was no longer hungry after I ate my salad, but I still wanted dessert!  I decided to have an amaretti cookie.  This is the only cookie that still tastes okay to me, because the cookie tends to taste a bit bitter, anyway, so I just feel that the bitterness is more pronounced.

Later in the afternoon, I felt energetic enough to vacuum, since I hadn't done that on Friday.  I started with the living room and ended up vacuuming the entire house!  First time I've felt well enough to do that in awhile.  Then, I cleaned both bathrooms! 

Afterwards, I had a cup of tea and watched the news.  Then, it was time to make the dessert to take to my friend's memorial dinner.  I made what I call pistachio fluff - basically, whipped topping, instant pistachio pudding mix, crushed pineapple, and mini marshmallows all mixed together.

I had bought the ingredients last year to make the dessert for the almsgiving that didn't take place.  The memorial dinner seemed to be an appropriate occasion to use what was bought for the almsgiving.   I used two containers of the whipped topping, two boxes of the pudding mix to one can of crushed pineapple in juice and about a third of the bag of marshmallows.  This has to be one of the easiest desserts to make - just dump everything into a bowl (no need to drain the can of crushed pineapple) and mix!

Ingredients Ready to be Mixed

Except, as I was mixing everything, I got a cramp in my right hand!  My first thought was, "Oh, no, not again!"  This was the first time I've had a cramp since I started taking the magnesium, except I hadn't yet taken today's dosage.  I knew I wasn't dehydrated because I had been drinking water, but anyway, I quickly took my magnesium pill and drank two cups of water.  Then, I sat down and rested.  The two things are probably not connected, but I keep associating the cramps with the black out in December and fear that the cramp is a presage to a black out.  I figured I had done a bit too much with the vacuuming, scrubbing of bathrooms, etc., and now the stirring and mixing was the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back!  Sigh.  Eventually, I finished mixing the dessert and sprinkled a packet of shelled pistachios on top, but I forgot to take a picture of the finished dessert.

It was a pleasant gathering, tinged with sadness, of course.  My late friend's older daughter had organized tonight's rosary prayer gathering and dinner.  My late friend's younger daughter lives in Colorado with her husband and baby daughter.  My late friend's husband had gone back to Colorado with his younger daughter after his wife's funeral.  There, he fell and broke several ribs and had to be hospitalized!  He is now recovering in a convalescent home in Colorado.   The younger daughter led the reciting of the rosary from her father's bedside.  It wasn't a video chat; they used speaker phones. Since I am not Catholic, I don't actually recite the rosary, although I know all the words, but I still participate by sitting and listening and meditating.  There will be a memorial mass at their church, tomorrow evening.  I have been included in the invitation to attend it. 

Dinner was served after the prayers were over.  I didn't stay too long after dinner (it was already past 11:00 p.m. by then).  My friend's daughter sent home a plate of food with me, so I won't have to cook, tomorrow.  After I came home, I video chatted with my daughter.

Today, I am grateful for:
- A day without rain to dry out a bit
- Getting the housework done
- The cramp was just a cramp, not a prelude to fainting and falling!
- Gathering together in memory of a friend
- A long phone conversation with my sister

Sunday's To Do List:
- Sleep in!  (It is 4:20 a.m. as I type this; prednisone keeps me awake!)
- Paperwork/Filing
- Tidy my bedroom
- Attend Memorial Mass (look up directions to church)
- Water the indoor plants
- Do the dishes
- Clean the litter box
- Do a load of laundry
 - Rest!

How was your Saturday?  What have you planned for Sunday? 

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Rainy Friday

Rain Drenched Front Garden
On days like today, I am reminded of the lyrics of the song, "It Never Rains in Southern California" by Albert Hammond:

"Seems it never rains in southern California
Seems I've often heard that kind of talk before
It never rains in California, but girl, don't they warn ya?
It pours, man, it pours"

Today, it poured!  We received more than a month's worth of rain in one day!  There were mud flows and flash floods, downed trees and power lines, some 110,000 homes and businesses without power,  sink holes including one that swallowed at least two cars, freeways that had to be closed due to flooding and cars that stalled because they ran out of gas while waiting to get off the closed freeways as well as cars that got stuck in flooded intersections on surface roads, several accidents, and, sadly, at least two fatalities:  one man came in contact with a downed power line and another man was found dead in a submerged car.

I was glad I was able to work from home, today, and didn't have to go to the office.  One of the freeways that closed due to the flooding is the one that I normally take to and from office and the flooded area is close to my neighborhood.  The commute home would have been a nightmare!

Instead, I sat by the heater and did my office work.  The lights flickered every so often, but I didn't lose power.  The rain was fairly slow in the morning, but in the afternoon, it poured down in buckets and there were strong winds.  Every so often, I'd go to the front window to cast an anxious eye on the eucalyptus tree in the front yard which was swaying due to the wind gusts:

Eucalyptus Tree: Still Standing!
There was a little fast flowing stream of water down the road by the curb - I tried to take a picture, but it's not very clear, as the rain was running down the window:

The Little "Stream" by the Curb

I know those of you who live in areas with frequent rain fall will be very amused, but we've just had 4 years of drought and it's like we received all the rain from those 4 years in one fell swoop, this year! 

There was about 2 inches of standing water in the back yard, near the covered patio area:

Pool of Standing Water in the Back Yard
The poor plants are probably wondering what is going on!  First they were dehydrated and now they are practically drowning! 

The rainy weather made me want a big, cooked brunch:

Friday Brunch

I pulled out the last packet of 3 rashers of bacon from the freezer and cooked them.  Then, I grated the remaining half of the potato (leftover from making those home made chips) and made hash browns with it.  Finally, I scrambled the last egg from the carton of 6 eggs I bought in January (on the 7th).  Then, sliced the orange I had picked, yesterday.  I served only half of a rasher of bacon to my plate, as that was plenty for me.  The remaining 2 1/2 rashers are in the fridge for some other meal.  The bacon grease, too, was saved in a jar and kept in the fridge to use as flavoring when I make something else.  I couldn't finish all of the orange; I ate half of it and kept the other half for later.  I had it after dinner, which was the leftover pasta and chicken from last night.

In the afternoon, I had a cup of tea and a piece of buttered toast.  As I mentioned in one of my responses to a comment on Thursday's post, the rain made me want tea and crumpets, but since I didn't have any crumpets, I had hot, buttered toast, instead!  :D

I had several phone calls from family and friends, today.  My aunt called in the afternoon to see how I was faring with all the rain, then two cousins and a friend called, too, to check on me.  Later, I video chatted with my daughter.  It had rained in Berkeley, too, she said.

Today, I am grateful for:
- The rain!
- Being able to work from home.
- Thus being able to have avoided being stuck on a closed freeway on the commute home.
- The eucalyptus tree didn't topple over or break!
- Family and friends calling to check on me.

The rain has ceased now.  But there is more rain in the forecast for tomorrow!

Saturday's To Do List:

- Finish all the unfinished items from Friday's to do list!
- Attend my friend's memorial service and dinner, if it is not raining too hard and the intersections are not flooded!
- Make a dessert to take to the dinner as my contribution.

How was your Friday?  What are your plans for the weekend?  


Friday, February 17, 2017

Thursday's Happenings

Today was supposed to be a Day without Immigrants, when immigrants were requested to stay away from going to work and school to highlight awareness of the role immigrants play in the economy of this country.  Well, I am an immigrant and I had already requested the day off from work to attend a doctor's appointment, so, I guess I took part in the day's events to a certain degree, albeit unknowingly, because my appointment was made for me three months' ago, well before I became aware of the Day without Immigrants.  Just as my next appointment was made for me, today, to return in another three month's time - as far as I know, there's nothing happening in mid-May!
I had planned to wake up at 8:00 a.m. to do a few things around the house before I had to leave for the appointment with the podiatrist, but I turned off the alarm and went back to sleep until 11:00 a.m.!  So much for my early start to the day!  My neighbor called in the morning and I had a quick chat with her, then went outside to exchange greetings with my gardener who had decided to attend to my front garden this morning, instead of waiting until his regular time on Friday afternoon, because we are supposed to have a major rainstorm on Friday.
I had a cup of tea, checked emails, responded to comments, etc., and then, it was time to get dressed and go to the appointment with the podiatrist.  I got to the clinic a few minutes before my 2:00 p.m. appointment and they were closed for lunch until 2:00 p.m.  So I sat in the waiting room and read my prayer book until they opened.  I was called in as soon as they opened, so it wasn't a long wait.  

The medical assistant checked my blood pressure, etc., and trimmed my toe nails for me.  While she did that, I had a nice chat with her.  She's probably in her early 20s, about my daughter's age; she told me all about herself and her family, from her 90+ year old great grandfather to her 2nd baby due in April, and everyone in between.  :)  I promise I am not a nosy woman who asks a lot of personal questions!  I just told her how my toe nails got discolored due to the chemo and how the discoloration is almost completely gone as the toe nails grow out; she said she was glad I was getting better and I told her I needed to be around a bit longer for my daughter.  Then, she told me how her uncle died, recently, in his sleep and it led her to telling me about her self and her family.  She needed to talk and I tend to be a good listener.  :)
Afterwards, the podiatrist came in and checked my feet and pronounced everything to be in good order.  He asked if I had any questions and when I didn't, told me he'll see me in three months' time and to drive home safely as we are expecting a major rainstorm.  :)  It was 3:00 p.m. when I left the clinic and the drive home wasn't too bad as the rush hour traffic was just building up.
I went to the pharmacy on my way home first, though, because one of my prescriptions was ready to be picked up.  The pharmacist who helped me today told me that I'm always with a big smile whenever she sees me and that I looked well with my hair growing out.

I had thought of going to the grocery store, too, but, it was past 4:00 p.m. by then, and I hadn't eaten anything yet (I had a cup of tea in the morning and a cracker while I was waiting for the clinic to open).  I wasn't feeling hungry, but I didn't want to push it and feel hungry and shaky at the grocery store!  I briefly considered buying something to eat (lots of eating places in the shopping mall where the pharmacy is located), but didn't want to buy anything again having bought the teriyaki beef bowls on Monday.  So I went home and made myself some fried rice for a late lunch, with leftover rice, a bit of corned beef, frozen corn, a handful of the roasted peanuts for crunch, and a little chili powder for spice.    I had a freshly picked orange from my tree for dessert.

Afterwards, I had a cup of tea, watched the evening news, did some paperwork, did the dishes, chatted on the phone with an aunt who called, and my daughter.  Later, I made myself some pasta for dinner.  I had kept one of the baked chicken breasts I had cooked on Monday and frozen to thaw in the fridge, earlier - it hadn't fully thawed, but I was able to cut several pieces from it.  I sauted them in a bit of oil and a little garlic spread I had in the fridge (from a purchased container), added half a chopped tomato (froze the rest of the tomato), and added a little frozen green peas to it, along with a little of the pasta water from cooking the angel hair pasta.  A little salt and pepper to season.  I added the cooked pasta to it and mixed it up.  I served half of what I made to my plate and sprinkled a little pre-grated parmesan cheese on top:

Pasta and Chicken Dinner

The curry powder and chili powder I had used to seasoned the chicken before I baked it added a bit of spice to the pasta and I enjoyed this dish.  I kept the other half for tomorrow's lunch.  I sliced an apple and "stewed" it in the microwave with a bit of cinnamon and sugar for dessert.  

Tomorrow, I will be working from home, so I won't have to worry about driving to downtown and back in the storm we are supposed to have.  Up to 6 inches of rain in most areas with 5-10 inches on certain parts, according to the forecast, with 60-70 miles per hour winds in places!   Most of the rain is expected to fall in the afternoon, at the rate of more than an inch an hour, which is too much rain at once for the ground to absorb.  So, they are expecting flash floods and possibly mud slides.

Today, I am grateful for:
- Having paid sick leave 
- A good visit with the podiatrist
- A safe drive to the clinic and back
- Pleasant staff at the clinic and pharmacy
- Keeping in touch with daughter, family, and friends

Today, I spent:
$ 15 co-pay at the clinic; $5 for parking; $2.94 for my medicine.

 Thursday’s To Do List:
- Doctor’s appointment (afternoon) - DONE
- Vacuum
- Paperwork/Filing - DID SOME
- Clear dining table - DONE
- Go for a walk - A very short one 
I didn't do the vacuuming I had planned to do today, so it gets carried forward to tomorrow or the weekend.  

Friday's To Do List:
- Office work
- Paperwork/filing
- Vacuum (living room, dining area, hallway, bedrooms)
- Clean the bathrooms

How was your Thursday?  Are you looking forward to Friday and the end of the work week?

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Tuesday and Wednesday


 “When I am an old woman I shall wear purple” – Jenny Joseph

That is the opening line of a poem titled “Warning” by Jenny Joseph.  The poem goes on to describe the red hat she'll also wear (which led to the formation of The Red Hat Society).  Purple has always been a favorite color of mine, and I didn't wait until I was an old woman to wear it.  I wore it a lot as a young woman in my teens and have continued to wear it or a variation of the shade, such as lilac.  But I was reminded of the poem when I got dressed to go to the office on Tuesday morning: lilac floral skirt, purple shell, lilac cotton cardigan.
Tuesday's Outfit

I used to have purple high heeled shoes and a matching purse, at one time; a purple bead necklace, etc.  Back when I was a younger woman and more stylish, when I had several pairs of shoes in colors to match my outfits and purses and jewelry to match.  These days, I have mostly black shoes and a single neutral colored everyday purse, and I rarely change my jewelry.  These days, I’d rather sleep in those extra 10 minutes!  LOL.

My morning commute to the office was a bit complicated as there was a road closure due to construction on the route I normally take.  And there was no clearly marked detour.  But I was familiar enough with the area and alternate routes, so once I made my way to a road I knew would take me downtown, I was able to relax.  Of course, several other drivers had also taken that alternate route, so it was a bit congested.  But I was able to get to the office at a reasonable time.  These days, that is 10:30 a.m.  Next week, I would like to bring it up to 9:30 a.m.

I had a good day at the office.  I still think I am more productive when I am at home, but I am getting more used to the background noise, again.  Later in the afternoon, I walked the three blocks to the local branch library and borrowed a book:  "Prague Winter: A Personal Story of Remembrance and War, 1937-1948” by Madeleine Albright.  It was a beautiful afternoon, sunny and warm.  Half way to the library, I remembered I hadn’t brought my cell phone with me – I had left it in my purse which was locked up in my desk.  But I had my employee ID which I wear on a lanyard around my neck and I carry one of my business cards in it, as well.  So, if there was a medical emergency, I had some identification on me!  I really must make it a point to carry my cell phone with me, though.

After I came home, I brought in the trash cans, had a cup of tea, watched the evening news and relaxed a bit.  Then, I decided I should put the sofa sheets to wash and vacuum the family room.  My artificial pine Christmas tree is just like a real pine tree in the sense it sheds!  My family room floor and the area rug were covered with the fake pine needles!  So I put the sheets to wash and vacuumed the family room and the kitchen.  Then, I pushed the sofas back in their usual place – I keep them in an L shaped arrangement, but had put them facing each other in order to accommodate the Christmas tree.  They are back in their usual L-shaped arrangement, now.  It opens up the room.  I also lint rollered the sofas before I covered them again with different sheets.  Then, I hung up the washed sheets to dry, went through this week’s grocery sales ads that had come in the mail, and had dinner.  I was tired by then and didn’t feel like sorting through the stack of mail and papers on the dining table.

Later, I video chatted with my daughter.  She had a lot to discuss about her work – apparently one of her colleagues is leaving her full time position at the end of the week and management had been asking daughter about her work load; daughter was hired to do 50% of her time on one project and the other 50% of the time on another project (two separate funding sources) and has been helping on a 3rd project during her “spare” time when work is slow on one of the other two projects.   Apparently, when she told them that, they teasingly asked her what about her evenings and weekends!  LOL.

Tuesday's To Do List:

- Go to the office - DONE

- Bring the trash cans in - DONE

- Finish clearing the dining table - Almost Done; only thing left is a stack of paper and my sewing machine and box of thread, which I want to keep out in case I sew this weekend

- Paperwork/Filing

- Vacuum (I am going to keep this on the list, but I doubt I'll be able to get to it until Thursday) – STARTED (did the family room and kitchen)

- Another load of laundry (sheets I use on the family room sofas to keep the cat fur off) – DONE

Yesterday, I was grateful for:

- A safe commute to the office

- A productive day

- Video chatting with my daughter

- The convenience of having a library an easy walk from the office

- Being told I looked very “spring like” in my lilac outfit by a colleague :)

Today (Wednesday), I wore my plaid skirt and cream sweater combination to the office.  I dressed it up with a multi-colored beaded necklace.  The clasp of the necklace broke, but I fixed it with a small safety pin!  I shall see about replacing the clasp when daughter comes on her next visit; I think she has some jewelry clasps, as she makes jewelry for her friends, at times.  If not, it’ll be a good excuse to visit the craft store!  (I am on a self-imposed general craft supplies diet, unless I need a specific item for a specific purpose!)

There was no road closure this morning, so the commute went fairly smoothly (there was a delay, however, due to an accident on the freeway).   I had a banana for breakfast, leftover teriyaki beef and rice for lunch, grapes, peanuts, and a couple of crackers for snacks.  I had forgotten how hazardous to one’s waistline our office tends to be!  There were doughnuts set out on the “snacks” table, along with small packets of M & M’s (last week, there were lemon muffins and chocolate candy bars; earlier there were pies to celebrate February birthdays).  Today there was a staff meeting during which there were cream puffs with a green tea filling which I declined.  Later in the afternoon, there was a retirement reception for a colleague with cakes, cookies, brownies, etc.  Again, I declined.  I’ve been guilty of bringing in banana bread, etc. to the office, myself, and on the first day I returned to work, I brought in a jar of chocolate covered raisins.  Next week, I think I’ll bring some fresh fruit and keep on the snack table as a healthier alternative!  Today, I did take a couple of oranges from my tree to give to my supervisor and the clerical staff.

The evening commute didn't go as smoothly as the morning commute.  There was another accident just before my exit and traffic was backed up and bumper to bumper.  I left the office at 5:30 p.m. and didn't get home until just after 7:00 p.m.  My daughter phoned as I walked in - she was calling to check if I had come home, yet!  (I text her to let her know when I leave the office and she knows it takes me about an hour to get home; she texted me at 6:30 p.m., but I was in the car and didn't answer the text).  So I chatted to her on the phone for a bit, then, made a cup of tea and just rested.  I was feeling too tired to do any of the things on my to do list for this evening! 

Dinner was the last of the macaroni and cheese I had made, mixed with some leftover corn and the last of the chicken breast half.  I'll call it a mac and cheese casserole!  Video chatted with daughter after dinner.

Today, I am grateful for:

- My supervisor being fine with me coming in at 10:30 a.m. and saying she’s happy to see me.

- Chats with colleagues.
- Being able to resist the sweets!
-  A safe commute to the office and back.
- Video chatting with my daughter.

The older daughter of my friend who passed away in November called me to inform me that she was having a memorial service and dinner afterwards to mark the passing of three months since her mother's death (one of our customs), this weekend.  She said it was going to be just family, but apparently I am included in "family"!  I asked her if I can bring something towards the dinner and she said if I'd like to bring a dessert that would be good.  I will make a pudding or something; the dinner is on Saturday night.

Wednesday’s To Do List:

- Go to the office - DONE

- Put away laundry - DONE

- Finish clearing the dining table - Mostly Done

- Paperwork/Filing

- Vacuum living room, dining area and hallway (probably won’t get to till Thursday)

- Clean the litter box/sweep bathroom (will get done before I go to sleep).

Thursday’s To Do List:

- Doctor’s appointment (afternoon)

- Vacuum

- Paperwork/Filing
- Clear dining table

- Go for a walk

How was your day?  Have you had a pleasant week so far?