Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Car Service on Monday

Today, I called the car service center to schedule an appointment for a regular maintenance service.  I didn't call until 2:00 p.m., but, they had an opening at 3:00 p.m. this afternoon, so, I booked that.  I took the car in and opted to wait for it; they estimated it to take one hour, maybe 1 1/2 hours at the most.  I had taken a book to read while I waited, as well as my sudoku puzzles book.  Their waiting room also has a TV to watch if you prefer that and free coffee, etc.

There was one other customer waiting for her car and a salesman who was getting himself a cup of coffee when I went; he offered to get me a cup of coffee or hot chocolate from the machine and I asked for a cup of hot chocolates.  The other customer left soon after that, but the salesman stayed and struck up a conversation with me, the usual small talk, asking about my car, what make, which year, etc.  I assumed he was going to try to sell me a newer model (my car is a 2014 model), but, instead, he told me his life story!  Where he was from (born in Atlanta, moved to Florida with his parents when he was a teen), what his parents did, about his younger sisters and grandmother, how he moved from Florida to California, two years ago, at the age of 18, the various jobs he did before he came to work at the dealership, how he sat in his car for 10 minutes trying to gather his courage to apply for this job, last year, what his long term goals in life were, and showed me pictures of his parents, grandmother, and sisters, etc.  He was still telling me about himself when the service rep came to tell me my car was ready!  LOL!  I think, maybe, I reminded him a little of his grandmother that he told me so much about himself.

But, this seems to happen quite often, actually.  I go somewhere to buy something or do something and often, people tell me about themselves.  My daughter tells me that there is something about me that seems to encourage people tell me about their life stories.  Maybe they sense I am genuinely interested in them. 

The car had nothing wrong with it, I was told.  The service came to $49.95.  On the way home, I stopped at the pizza place and bought a pepperoni pizza for $5.48, including tax.

Later in the evening, I took the trash cans out to the curb and watered the front garden.   

Today, I am grateful for:
- I was able to get a same day appointment for the car service
- They didn't find anything wrong with the car that required expensive repairs
- A cup of hot chocolate and an interesting conversation while I waited
- Water for the garden
- Video chatting with my daughter

My joyful activity for the day was fitting a few more pieces in the puzzle.

Plans for tomorrow include some housework and paperwork. 

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

Monday, January 27, 2020

More Grocery Shopping on Sunday

Mourning Dove
There was a mourning dove looking for food in the back yard, today.  The picture was taken through the sliding glass door which is a bit dusty, but, I didn't want to open the door and startle the dove.  As it was, it had seen me standing there and was checking to see what I was doing.  It should have been looking in the other direction though:

Better Watch Out for the Kitty, Mourning Dove!
Do you see the white form in the second planting circle?  That's Snowball, one of the garden cats!  She had her back turned to the bird, so, I guess the bird was safe.  Nevertheless, it was a very brave bird!  It flew off shortly after I took this picture and Snowball turned to see what was going on.  But, she was taking a nap among the pruned rose bushes and not inclined to chase after birds, I guess.

Today, I washed my bed sheets, practiced the piano, and fitted a few more pieces in the jigsaw puzzle.

Later in the afternoon, I went to the pharmacy to pick up my medication.  The lower dosage flagged an automatic consultation with the pharmacist who checked with me to see if I knew why the dosage was changed.  I'm glad they check to make sure that the patient is aware of a change in the dosage.

After that, since the dollar store is right next to the pharmacy, I went in there and did some grocery shopping.  I bought bread, bananas, two bags of salad mix, 2 cans of apple pie filling, 6 cans of coconut milk, a 4-pack of lemon lime soda cans, and a box of microwave popcorn,  My total came to $14.26.

Dollar Store Receipt

Then, I went to the regular grocery store, which is also in the same shopping mall, and bought half a gallon of milk ($2.19), 1 box of brown sugar ($.99), and a small container of chocolate chip cookies from the bakery section ($1.49).  My total came to $4.67.

Grocery Store Receipt

I didn't take a picture of my groceries, though.

Today's grocery shopping came to ($14.26 + $4.67) = $18.93

January grocery budget = $75
Spent to date = $21.56 + $1.50 + $23.11+ $18.93 = $65.10
Balance left in the budget = $75 - $65.10 = $9.90

Well, obviously, I changed my mind about saving $20 from this month's grocery budget to buy tea!  But, that's okay.  I will wait until February and buy tea with February's budget! 

Today, I am grateful for:
- Drama-free medication refills
- Pharmacist checking to make sure I was aware of the change in the dosage
- Flexibility in the grocery budget
- Being able to stock up
- Freshly washed bed sheets

Today's joyful activity was playing the piano (after I did the practicing, I played a few songs that I knew by ear, for fun).

Monday's To Do List:
- Call to schedule a car service
- Take the trash cans to the curb
- Water the front garden
- Do the dishes
- Put away the rest of the laundry

How was your Sunday?  What are your plans for Monday? 

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Relaxing on Saturday

Today was the 15th annual Free Museum Day, here, in southern California.  Over 40 area museums and botanical gardens offered free admission to their general exhibits (paid tickets were required for certain special exhibits).  Friend R and I had discussed taking advantage of the free admissions and going to perhaps a museum or a botanical garden.  But, every venue I checked out online had something to say about the higher than usual numbers of visitors expected to attend and potential difficulties with finding parking.  I don't like to visit places when they are too crowded, so R and I decided we'll visit the museums on another day!  There are several museums that offer free admission, either every day (the Getty Center, for example, offers free admission, daily, but, one has to pay for parking) or on various days of the month (such as the Autry museum that is free on every second Tuesday of the month).  I suppose I could have made the effort and gone, but, I was in the mood for a quiet, relaxed day at home!

I had gone to bed rather late, last night (4:30 a.m.; maybe I should say "early this morning", instead?).  I turned the alarm off when it rang at 9:00 a.m. and slept until almost 11:00 a.m.!  After a cup of tea and replying to blog comments, I made milk rice for brunch and had it with spicy onion sambol and pork curry.

Then, I practiced the piano.  First, I played the pieces I am learning in my book and then, I took out one of my daughter's beginner books and played through all the pieces in that book for a bit of variety.

Later in the afternoon, I fitted a few more pieces in the jigsaw puzzle.  My helper was taking an afternoon nap, so I had to manage on my own!

Then, it was time for a cup of tea with a slice of bread and butter, while I watched the evening news. 

Cousin P called in the evening and we had a long chat about various things.

Dinner was a salad, but, I'll probably have a snack before I go to sleep.  Some cereal, maybe.

Today, I am grateful for:
- A relaxed day
- Being able to sleep in
- Fresh lemons from the garden
- Learning new things
- Video chatting with my daughter

Today's joyful activity was doing the jigsaw puzzle.

Plans for tomorrow include going to the pharmacy to pick up a prescription refill that is ready and maybe a bit of grocery shopping.

How was your Saturday?  What are your plans for Sunday?

Movie at the Library on Friday

Today was the day the library was screening the second free movie of the month.  In the morning, I debated going to see the movie.  I am not much of a movie-goer and staying home, watching the Senate hearings and doing the jigsaw puzzle seemed like a good idea!  But, I felt that I should make the effort to go.  After all, they are providing free entertainment and all I had to do was show up!  I called cousin P to see if she'd like to go with me, but, she said she needed to do a few things around the house. 

So, in the afternoon, I went to the library, by myself, to watch the screening of "Judy".  I am glad I went to see it, because I really enjoyed it.  Of course, I cried, but then, I always seem to cry at movies!  But, it was a good movie and I am glad I had the opportunity to watch it.  Next month, they are showing "Chinatown" and "Harriet".  I don't think I will go to see Chinatown, but, I will plan on going to see Harriet.  My daughter saw it with a friend of hers and said it was a good movie. 

I came home after the movie and a few minutes later, friend M came over to tend to the garden.  Afterwards, I spent a quiet evening, working on the puzzle, doing a load of laundry, and practicing the piano.

Today, I am grateful for:
- Free movie screenings at the library
- A fun afternoon watching the movie
- M tending to the garden
- Video chatting with my daughter
- Working appliances

Today's joyful activity was watching the movie at the library.

I don't have any big plans for tomorrow.  Friend R and I had made a tentative plan to get together, but, I called her, this evening, and we decided to get together another weekend, instead.

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

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Busy Thursday and Answered Prayers

I woke up about 15 minutes before my alarms went off, this morning.  I was tempted to go back to sleep for another 10 minutes or so, but, I forced myself to get up. I had my tea and got dressed without rushing too much.  Then, left the house at 10:00 a.m. to go to my 11:00 a.m. doctor's appointment - with the primary care physician, a routine check up.  I got to the doctor's office exactly at 11:00 a.m.!  There wasn't a long wait and the visit went well.  She didn't say anything about my weight (haven't lost any!), but, said my blood pressure was good.  She reviewed my blood test results and made yet another adjustment in my medications!  I have another routine check up in April and I have to do another blood test before my visit. 

I left the doctor's office at 11:45 a.m. and got home by 12:30 p.m.  Aunt C had called and left a message, so I called her back and chatted with her for a bit.  Her daughter, my cousin N, was cleaning out the garage, aunt said, and aunt was helping her to decide what to keep and what to give away.  I need to do that, myself, one of these days! 

After lunch, I went for my piano lesson.  I had a good lesson, but, I have to repeat some of the pieces as I need to play them smoothly.  "Legato", she said!  And, "Play slowly".  I didn't get any stickers, this time!  LOL.

In the evening, I went to see my friend who had a stroke in early December.  She is home, now, able to talk quite well and walk unaided.  When I think of how she was when I visited in the hospital that first time, her recovery is nothing short of a miracle!  Definitely in answer to all our prayers!  I told them that we have all been praying for her recovery, including several of my blog friends.  She still needs to have dialysis three times a week and they had to replace the port through which they do the dialysis, this week, because the earlier one didn't work too well. But, she is doing so well.  Her sister has come down to look after her, leaving her husband and two babies back in Colorado (the older girl is 3 years old and the younger one is not yet 1 year old); it's hard for her, too.  She recently lost her job when the department store she worked in for over 20 years closed down, so she has the time to be with her sister, but, it means she is unable to look for another job, at present.

After I came home, I had dinner.  I had cooked the green beans and the pork chop, last night:

Sauteed Green Beans and Pork Curry
Yes, I cut up the pork chop and made a curry with it.

This is a photo of last night's dinner:

Later in the evening, I video chatted with my daughter.

Today, I am grateful for:
- The doctor's visit went well
- I had a safe drive there and back
- Free parking at the doctor's office
- My friend's recovery from her stroke
- Her sister is able to spare the time to be with her right now

Today's joyful activity was doing the second jigsaw puzzle.  As usual, I had some help:

Dancer Helps with the Puzzle
Plans for tomorrow include maybe going to see the free movie at the library and having M tend to the garden.

How was your Thursday?  What are your plans for Friday?

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Grocery Shopping on Wednesday

1/22 Groceries

Today, I put gas to the car ($3.35/gal; put $30 worth of gas) and then, went to the grocery store across the street from the gas station to do some grocery shopping.

I bought:
1 bottle canola oil = $1.88
5 Tangerines @ $.49/lb = $1.15
4 bananas @$.49/lb = $.57
4 mangoes @ $.50 = $2.00
Green beans @ $1.49/lb = $.57
1 salad kit = $.88
1 pork chop @$.99/lb = $.66
5 cans tuna in water @ $.79 = $3.95
1 pint milk = $1.69
3 boxes mac and cheese @$1.00 = $3.00
1 container iodized salt = $.89
Total =  $17.24

In addition to my regular groceries, I also bought:

Earthquake/emergency supplies:  some bottled water to add to my emergency/earthquake supplies:
2 x 1 gallon bottles of water @ $.89 (includes deposit) = $1.78
24 count 1 liter bottles of water = $2.89 + $1.20 deposit = $4.18
Total = $5.87

Household supplies:
1 box of dishwasher detergent powder = $4.49

Pet Supplies:
1 bag of cat food (13 lbs) = $9.99
1 bag cat food (16 lbs) = $10.49

On the dishwasher detergent and cat food = $2.37

My total bill came to $50.45

As always, Dancer came to inspect the groceries as that's part of his job:

"What did you buy, Mummy?"

As most of you know, the household supplies and pet supplies are not part of my grocery budget.  The water will be included in the grocery budget, simply because I don't have a separate earthquake/emergency supplies budget (although I could use the "Miscellaneous Items" budget category for them). 

My grocery budget, for groceries only (no household products, no toiletries, no pet food) is $75/month, for one person (it stretches to accommodate my daughter when she visits).

So far in January, I have spent:

Jan. 10:
2 - 10 lb. bags of sugar @ $5.79 = $11.58
1 frozen pizza = $3.99
1 frozen cheesecake = $5.99
Total = $21.56

Jan. 20:
1 loaf of bread = $1.50

Jan. 22:
Groceries + water = $17.24 + $5.87 = $23.11

January grocery budget = $75
Spent to date = $21.56 + $1.50 + $23.11 = $46.17
Balance left in the budget = $75 - $46.17 = $28.83

I am hoping to reserve $20 of that to stock up on tea, when the store gets a supply of my favorite tea. 

1/22 Grocery Receipt
Breakfast had been a cup of tea.  After I came home from grocery shopping, I had a tuna sandwich (shared some of the tuna with Dancer) and a tangerine for a late lunch.  Dinner will be part of the pork chop with rice and green beans. 

Cousin V called in the morning.  Later, I spoke with the sister of my friend who had a stroke earlier in December - she is home from the hospital and recovering.

I found the missing puzzle pieces under a piece of furniture, this morning!  I broke up the puzzle and put all the pieces back into the box - I will do it all over again, next Christmas! 

I also took things out of two shelves in a kitchen cabinet, wiped down the shelves, and put things back again. 

Today, I am grateful for:
- A sunny day
- My friend who had the stroke is now home from the hospital
- The doctor's office called and confirmed tomorrow's appointment
- Gas for the car
- Phone calls from cousins and friends

My joyful activity for today was finding the missing puzzle pieces!

Plans for tomorrow include the doctor's appointment and my piano lesson.

How was your day?  How is your grocery shopping coming along?  Are you able to keep to your budget, so far in January?

Jigsaw Puzzles and Earthquakes on Tuesday

Completed Jigsaw Puzzle (minus five pieces!)

Another rather cloudy day, although there was a little sunshine in the early afternoon.  I decided to have a quiet day at home.  I watched the Senate impeachment proceedings (had it going on in the background, all day), made a phone call and scheduled an appointment, called cousin P to check on her, brought in the trash can, cooked the rest of the canned corned beef with onions and tomatoes, cooked a pot of rice, too, did the day's dishes, and completed one of the jigsaw puzzles I received for Christmas!  Doing a 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle was challenging enough, but doing it with five pieces missing made it that much more challenging!  I have no idea what happened to the five missing pieces, but, I rather suspect my "helper" kitty might have something to do with their disappearance!  I looked under the table, but, didn't find any missing pieces.

We just had an earthquake!  While I was typing the above sentence!  A magnitude 3.6 according to the USGS and situation not too far from where I live!  Nothing fell or broke at my house.  What a blessing that it was a small earthquake!  The lights didn't even flicker, but, once the shaking stopped, I went and got my flashlight to keep by my side!  I just hope it wasn't a fore-shock!  I was just talking about earthquake with a friend of mine, yesterday! 

Today, I am grateful for:
- The earthquake wasn't a big one
- No damages from it as far as I know
- A quiet, restful day at home
- A working heater
- Being able to watch the Senate hearings

Today's joyful activity was finishing the jigsaw puzzle.

Plans for tomorrow include putting gas to the car (since I didn't do that, today) and grocery shopping.

How was your Tuesday?  What are your plans for Wednesday?  Do you get earthquakes where you live?