Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Balanced Life Monthly Goals - September Review and October Goals

Time to do a review of how well balanced September was for me and what I intend to do to strive for balance in October. 

As I've explained before, my monthly balanced life goals are similar to the spokes of a wheel, with the length of each spoke representing my satisfaction in that area of my life, from 1 to 10, with 1 being most dissatisfied and 10 being most satisfied.  Ideally, all the spokes are of equal length and the wheel will roll along smoothly.  If the spokes are of unequal lengths, then, the resulting wheel will be lop-sided and wobbly.  My ratings for each segment are shown within the parentheses, with the beginning of the month ratings in black and the end of the month ratings in blue.

Balanced Life Goals: 

September Spiritual (10)(10)The goal is to live a spiritually meaningful life.
- Continue with daily prayers, meditation, being grateful, positive, and joyful
- Continue to attend Temple prayer/blessing services online
- Participate in the September prayer gathering if possible/if there is one
- Continue to cultivate non-attachment by being generous and giving to the extent I am able

I was able to attend online blessing services at the Temple as the monks continue to post it on a daily basis.  There was no monthly rosary prayer gathering in September and, I think, it has come to an end for the time being.  Whether they start it, again, post-Covid remains to be seen, but, I have removed it from my monthly goals for October.  I continued with my own daily prayers, meditation, being grateful, and I have tried to be positive and joyful.  I am keeping the rating at 10.

October Spiritual (10)
- Continue with daily prayers, meditation, being grateful, positive, and joyful
- Continue to attend Temple prayer/blessing services online
- Continue to cultivate non-attachment by being generous and giving to the extent I am able 

September House (9)(9): The goal is a home that is pleasant, comfortable, and welcoming.
- Clean - Clean as needed
- Organize - Continue to find a place for everything and keep everything in its place
- Well maintained - Keep "erasing the evidence"; implement daily and weekly cleaning schedules
- Decluttered - Continue to declutter (goal = 30 items)

I have been cleaning, organizing, and keeping the house tidy and maintained, for the most part.  I still struggle with things piling up, from time to time, but, I am happy with what I have been able to accomplish.  Two of my big cleaning projects this month were organizing the bathroom shelf unit and the cabinet under the kitchen sink.  I decluttered my 30 items, including an extracted tooth and the crown that used to be on the tooth before it broke!  Other items decluttered include brochures and financial reports, a few CDs, extra jars, and food containers.  I am keeping the rating at 9.  

October House (9):  
- Clean - Clean as needed 
- Organize - Continue to find a place for everything and keep everything in its place
- Well maintained - Keep "erasing the evidence"; implement daily and weekly cleaning schedules
- Decluttered - Continue to declutter (goal = 31 items)

September Garden (9)(9): The goal is a garden that is productive, yet drought tolerant.
- Maintain (water frequently as needed, weed, fertilize)
Continue with landscaping the side yard

The garden is being maintained.  This is not the best month for the garden due to the heat, but, so far, this year, I haven't lost any plants.  I put down more flattened cardboard boxes in the side yard in an attempt to form a weed barrier and have been able to cover the entire length of it with at least one layer of flattened boxes.  I am not sure if one layer would be enough, though.  I will try to get more boxes to form a second layer.  I am still planning to get several bags of pebbles to put down as a path with some stepping stones in between and plant some drought tolerant plants there.  I am keeping the rating at 9.  

October Garden (9):
- Maintain(water frequently as needed, weed, fertilize)
Continue with landscaping the side yard
- Discuss the possibility to planting additional fruit trees with M

September Daughter (10)(10): The goal is to continue to have a close relationship with her.
- Daily texts, phone calls, and video chatting, etc., to keep in close touch with her
- Be supportive of her and continue to be there for her

Daughter and I continue to keep in contact daily.  I am grateful for her help with various tasks such as ordering groceries, air purifiers, and face masks online.  I am also very grateful that we get to see each other during our nightly online chats.  I am keeping the rating at 10.

October Daughter (10):
- Daily texts, phone calls, and video chatting, etc., to keep in close touch with her
- Be supportive of her and continue to be there for her

September Family & Friends (10)(10): The goal is to continue to have a close connection with family and friends.
- Regular phone calls and emails to check on family and friends

On going.  I have been interacting regularly with family and friends through phone calls, emails, texts, etc.  I am keeping the rating at 10.  

October Family and Friends (10):
- Regular phone calls and emails to check on family and friends

September Community (10)(10):  The goals is to be involved in my community
- Continue to participate in the various community groups to the extent possible

I participated in the blogging community, continued to participate in the online organizing group, exchanged weekly phone calls with neighbor T, interacted with other neighbors, and participated in temple services online. I am keeping the rating at 10.

October Community (10):
- Continue to participate in the various community groups to the extent possible.

September Finances (10)(10): The goal is financial security
- Continue spending mindfully, with purpose

I continued to spend mindfully in September.  My big expense, this month, was my car insurance renewal.  I stayed within budget for groceries in September.  I am keeping the rating at 10.

October Finances (10):
- Continue spending mindfully, with purpose

September Health & Well Being (8)(8): The goal is good health

- Attend all of this month's medical appointments (3 scheduled - dentist, mammogram/bone density scan, podiatrist)
- Continue to work on the same life style changes as before to the extent possible
- Continue to strive to attain a healthier weight 

I attended all my medical appointments, this month, and received my flu vaccination, as well.  I didn't lose any weight, but, I didn't gain anything, either!  I'm keeping the rating at 8!

October Health & Well Being (8):
- Attend all of this month's medical appointments (4 scheduled - dentist, ophthalmologist, blood test,  oncologist)
- Participate in the phone appointment regarding my application for Medicare
- Fill out the health coverage applications
Continue to work on the same life style changes as before to the extent possible
- Continue to strive to attain a healthier weight 

September Time Management (8)(8): The goal is to spend my time in a mindful manner.
- Focus on making my schedule work for me
- Procrastinate less
- Spend time purposefully, mindfully

On going.  I am making my schedule work for me, trying not to procrastinate, too much, and trying to spend my time purposefully and mindfully.  I am keeping my satisfaction rating to 8.   

October Time Management (8):
- Continue to focus on making my schedule work for me
- Procrastinate less
- Spend time purposefully, mindfully

September Leisure/Crafts/Hobbies/Me-Time (10)(10): The goal is to relax doing something I enjoy doing for the pleasure of it.
- Engage in daily joyful activities
- Daily piano practicing
- Pick one unfinished crafts project (quilt in progress) and finish it!

I have been engaging in daily joyful activities and have been practicing the piano.  The quilt has remained untouched (I am still maintaining that it is too hot to work on a quilt; today's temperature was 104F, but, I didn't want to turn on the room air conditioner). I started knitting a scarf, instead!  I am keeping the rating at 10.  

October Leisure/Crafts/Hobbies/Me-Time (10):
Engage in daily joyful activities
- Daily piano practicing
- Do a crafts project (I have a specific project in mind; just need to get started on it!)

All in all, September was a good month with all the areas being maintained and the ratings staying the same.

How was your September in terms of maintaining balance among the different areas of your life?  How do you plan to achieve or maintain balance in your life in October?  What are your monthly goals for October?

Monthly Mini Photo Challenge: Green

Eileen, at A Bracelet of Days, has a monthly mini photo challenge with a different theme for each month.  The theme for September was "Green".  Participants had to take a minimum of 5 photos (no maximum) reflecting this theme during the month.

At first, I was a bit stumped because all I could think of for "green" were plants!  But, then, she made a few suggestions and my daughter made a few suggestions and, suddenly, I was humming my favorite frog's (Kermit, of course!) song about being green and seeing lots of green things all around!  LOL.

These are my "green" photos:

Glass Bird - a gift from one of my aunts

Apples - in the fruit basket

Green Bin for Yard Waste

An Orange - before it is ripe

Tiny Bottle - which once held some perfumed oil

Hand carved and painted wooden elephant from Sri Lanka


Crocheted Pot Holder - a gift from a blog friend

Canning Jar

And, last, but not least:

My 1970's Avocado Green Crock Pot! 

A gift from one of my cousins who received two of them as wedding gifts, back in the 1970s!  A bit dusty from being stored in the back of one of my kitchen cabinets.  Still works, but, not used all that much because the liner does not come out for easy cleaning.  Cannot be donated because, one time, when my daughter was 3 years old and I took something in it for a pot luck at her child care center, I was short-sighted enough to write her name on it with a permanent marker.  The ink has faded after much scrubbing, but, hasn't come off the outside of the pot and I am not willing to give away anything with her name written on it!  That's why I photographed it from the side! 

Thank you, Eileen, for issuing the mini photo challenge.  Looking forward to October's theme!

Did anyone else participate?

SPSH - September Link Up

It is time for the last link up for the SPSH, organized by Mary Lou at Patio Postcards!  

My June link up is here 
My July link up is here
My August link up is here

These are my finds for the remaining prompts and, since I was able to find photos for all the prompts, this time, I included photos for all three alternatives, as well.

#10: Something smaller than a paper clip: A staple!  They both hold papers together!

#10: Something smaller than a paper clip: A staple.

#13: A rubber band/elastic in use:  A sign of the times - elastic ear loops on a fabric face mask.

#13: A rubber band/elastic in use:  elastic ear loops on a fabric face mask.

In Use

#15:  Something inherited.  A table cover/bed spread crocheted by my maternal grandmother.

#15: Something Inherited

My maternal grandmother did filet crochet.  She crocheted a table cover/bed spread for each of her daughters and daughters-in-law.  This is the one she made for my mother and I inherited it from her. She crocheted the table covers in long panels which were sewn together.  I'm not sure how Granny learned to crochet, but, according to my mother, Granny had been lefthanded and could not teach her right-handed daughters how to crochet.  My mother learned to crochet from a friend, but, she couldn't do filet crochet.

Table Cover Close Up

My daughter will be inheriting this, in her turn.  

#19: A stone/rock/pebble with some color in it.  A collection of polished quartz and other stones that my daughter bought during a long ago visit to a science museum:

#19: A stone/rock/pebble with some color in it

Alt A: An animal statue:  A carved elephant that had been my father's since he was a child; could have worked for #15 Something inherited, too.  It's all battered and cracked, but, it has its spot in front of the living room fireplace.

Alt A: An animal statue

Alt B: Something heavier than your shoe:  my purse/handbag!  No matter how often I clean it out, it always weighs a ton!

Alt B: Something heavier than your shoe

Alt C: Something with four sides: A framed painting my daughter did when she was 5.  She had just been promoted to 1st grade after one month of kindergarten (during which time she was sent to grade 2 for reading).  The teacher announced that she was entering the class in an art competition and they were to draw an "Under the Sea" scene.  Daughter came home and cried because she said she couldn't draw.  She placed in the top ten and received an honorable mention for her efforts.

Alt C: Something with four sides

I had fun participating in the summer photo scavenger hunt.  The first time I participated in one of these photo scavenger hunts, one of my friends teased me about finding practically every single one in and around my house, and that was well before Covid!  It wasn't difficult at all to find photos for this summer's photo hunt in and around my house, either!

Thank you for organizing it, Mary Lou.

Tuesday, September 29, 2020


We had a bit of a heat wave, today, with the temperature reaching a high of 102F; tomorrow is supposed to be 104F.  

I had a relatively quiet morning, putting away the laundry from yesterday, replying to blog comments, and reading and commenting on a few other blogs.  After brunch, I practiced the piano, watered the houseplants, and did the dusting.  I couldn't motivate myself to organize the files I thought I might work on.  I guess I had my fill of paperwork, yesterday.  I also called my doctor's office (still closed) and requested a new prescription for the rescue inhaler.  I didn't realize that the one I was using had expired in March, 2019!  No wonder it wasn't that effective!  In the evening, I watered the back garden. 

Today, I am grateful for:

- Warm fall weather

- Weekly trash collections

- Electricity to run the appliances

- Water for the garden

- Medications

Today's joyful activity was knitting.  

 Tuesday's To Do List:

- Bring the trash cans in - DONE
- Dust family room and my bedroom - DONE
- Water the back garden - DONE
- Water the house plants - DONE
- Put away the dried laundry - DONE
- Reorganize one or two files
- Try not to stress about Friday - TRIED!

Wednesday's To Do List:
- Vacuum
- Paperwork/filing 
- Do one decluttering/organizing task
- Practice the piano
- Water the front garden

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

Monday, September 28, 2020


A sunny, warm day.

I tended to some paperwork in the morning, paying a couple of bills and clearing up a backlog of filing.  I am all caught up on paperwork, except for the bill that came in today's mail (cell phone bill) and sewer services letter.  There is, of course, all the medical insurance paperwork to do, but, I can't do that until after Friday's phone appointment.  I wanted to get the current stuff all up to date, before I start on the medical insurance application.  There are other files to organize but, for now, those papers are in file folders and can wait.

Later, I practiced the piano and dusted the living room and dining area.  I also cleaned out the fridge, wiping down the shelves and door handles.  There wasn't anything that needed to be tossed, etc., however, I have accumulated quite a few bread ends, so, there might be a bread pudding in the future! 

I had the last of the tomato soup for brunch and washed the dishes.  

In the afternoon, I had my piano lesson, which went quite well.  I was able to put aside two of the pieces I was playing.  Now I have four pieces left to practice, with the hope of being able to finish two of them, next week.  After which, I should receive another new piece to learn.

In the evening, I took the trash cans to the curb, watered the front garden, and did a load of laundry.  The rest of the evening will be spent watching a dance competition on TV.

Today, I am grateful for:

- Learning to play the piano, again

- A patient piano teacher

- Being able to pay my bills

- My daughter's help and encouragement with everything I try to do

- Asthma inhalers

Today's joyful activity was getting caught up with the paperwork!  

 Monday's To Do List:

- Load of laundry - DONE; hanging up to dry
- Dust living room & dining area - DONE
- Clean the fridge - DONE
- Take trash cans to the curb for Tuesday trash pick up - DONE
- Piano lesson - DONE
- Paperwork - pay bills/file - DONE
- Water the front garden - DONE

Tuesday's To Do List:
- Bring the trash cans in
- Dust family room and my bedroom
- Water the back garden
- Water the house plants
- Put away the dried laundry
- Reorganize one or two files
- Try not to stress about Friday

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

Sunday, September 27, 2020

September Meal Plan: Week 4 Review and Week 5

When I made my Week 4 Meal Plan, I anticipated wanting some soft, easy to eat food for after the tooth extraction and included soup.  What I didn't anticipate is my neighbor S bringing me dinner two evening in a row!  I was happy to change the meal plan options to include those dinners!

This was the meal plan options I started out with:

September Week 4 Meal Plan Options:

Breakfast/Brunch/Lunch:  Leftover French toast (Monday), cereal with milk, scrambled egg and toast or fried potatoes, pancakes, tuna or egg salad sandwiches, garden salad.

Dinners:  Leftover hamburger patty with salad and corn; chicken stir fry with rice or noodles; soup (Thursday, after tooth extraction), leftovers.

Snacks/desserts:  Fruits, crackers, tortilla chips, ice cream, etc.

And this is what actually happened:

Brunch: Banana 
Dinner: Scrambled egg (singular; I usually eat only one egg at a meal)
Snacks/Dessert: Orange, grapes, crackers
(I wasn't hungry on Monday; day long asthma flare up)
Breakfast: French toast, orange juice
Lunch: Pizza
Dinner: Dolma and tabbouleh (compliments of neighbor S)

Dinner: Dolma and Tabbouleh
Snacks/Dessert:  Crackers, grapes

Brunch: Leftover Dolma
Dinner:  Beef and potato stew compliments of neighbor S to which I added green peas

With Green Peas 
Snacks/Dessert: Crackers, grapes

Brunch: Ice cream!  (Post tooth extraction)
Dinner:  Tomato soup; followed by mashed potatoes a couple of hours later; followed by a scrambled egg another couple of hours later; followed by a slice of bread and butter!
Snacks/Dessert: more ice cream

Breakfast: Tomato soup
Lunch: Beef and potato stew, thinned down with water 
Dinner: Tomato soup; bread and butter;  hamburger patty (later at night)
Snacks/Dessert: Grapes

Breakfast: Tomato soup
Lunch: Shredded chicken sandwich  
Dinner: Macaroni and cheese with green peas
Snacks/Dessert: Orange juice, crackers

Breakfast:  French toast
Lunch: Tomato soup, crackers
Dinner:  Leftover macaroni and cheese
Snacks: Cantaloupe

It all worked out quite well, I think. 

On to Week 5.  I am going to include the first few days of October as part of my September Week 5 meal plan.  I will not be grocery shopping this week; I still have most of what I bought during the grocery pick up, last week.

September Week 5 Meal Plan Options:

Breakfast/Brunch/Lunch:  Pancakes, uppuma (semolina), milk rice and onion relish (Thursday, October 1), tuna or egg salad sandwiches, leftover tomato soup (1 small serving left), salad.

Dinners:  Leftover mac and cheese; chicken stir fry with rice; "breakfast for dinner";  leftovers

Snacks/desserts:  Fruits, crackers, etc.

That's the plan, anyway.  Let's see how it works out.

How about you?  Are you making a meal plan/options this week?

Saturday, September 26, 2020


Another relaxed day.  I slept in, then, spent the rest of the morning replying to blog comments, practicing the piano, watching a bit of TV, and doing the dishes.  

In the afternoon, I took a container of my tomato soup and a sleeve of saltine-type crackers to friend R; soup and crackers for her dinner.  I put the bag with them in one of the two styrofoam boxes I have in the trunk of my car and she took the bag from the trunk.  Contactless delivery and pick up!  

It was a sunny day, with a high of 85F (cooler than yesterday!), and poor air quality according to one website and fair, according to another!  LOL!  But, I didn't get any asthma flare ups, for which I am grateful.  The temperature is supposed to go up, again, next week, with highs above 100F, mid-week.  We really don't get the usual fall weather until later in October.

In the evening, I did a little paperwork, opening mail that had been sitting out to air, tossing out offers to buy my house (thanks, but I have no plans to sell) and senior health care plans that will be available upon receiving Medicare when I turn 65 (each a reminder that I have my phone appointment related to that, next Friday), and setting aside the bills to be paid and statements to be filed.  

I wanted something a little more substantial than soup for my dinner, so cooked some boxed macaroni and cheese; with a little frozen green peas and chili powder added, it was just what I wanted.  Not only was it a meal from the pantry and freezer, it was a frugal meal, too, as the box of macaroni and cheese cost under $1.00.  Later, I might add some shredded cooked chicken to the leftovers.  

Today, I am grateful for:

- Relaxed days

- Being able to visit friend R and take some homemade soup to her

- Not having an asthma flare up

- Not having any pain from the tooth extraction

- Antibiotics

Today's joyful activity was visiting friend R and taking her some soup.

Plans for tomorrow include more relaxing and, maybe, a little more paperwork.  What are your plans for Sunday?


I've had a fairly quiet day, today.  I haven't experienced any pain from the tooth extraction; if anything, my arm feels more sore from the flu shot than my mouth feels from the extraction!  I didn't have to take any more pain medications, today.  Even so, I took it easy and watched TV, read blogs, played some online solitaire, etc., all day, pausing, occasionally, to practice the piano, water the houseplants, clean the litter box, collect today's mail, and take two bags of papers, etc., to the recycling bin.

I had a cup of lukewarm tea when I woke up, followed by a bowl of tomato soup for breakfast, the last of the stew that neighbor S had given me (thinned down with some water) for lunch, and more tomato soup with two slices of buttered bread for dinner.  What I really wanted for dinner was milk rice, but, I felt too lazy to cook it and the onion relish I like to eat with it; I might cook some, tomorrow, though.  I resisted the temptation of having more ice cream, today, but, I had a cup of iced coffee in the evening, instead of tea.  

Friend M tended to the garden in the evening.  He brought me a few more plants to add to my collection, including a jacaranda seedling and a Boston ivy cutting.  Yay, more plants for the garden!

Some of you commented that you were able to buy disposable face masks online; thank you for that information.  I checked it out and informed my daughter; we have ordered some masks and they will be delivered, some to me and some to her, in a few days.

Today, I am grateful for:

- Not experiencing any pain from the tooth extraction

- For helpful blog readers

- Being able to order some disposable masks

- M bringing me more plants for the garden

- A working blender (to puree my soup)

Today's joyful activity was video chatting with my daughter.

I don't have any firm plans for tomorrow.  Another quiet, relaxed day, I think, with maybe a short car ride.

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


Thursday, September 24, 2020

Toothless on Thursday

I had my tooth extracted, today.  My appointment was at noon and the whole procedure was completed by 12:30 p.m.  It was relatively painless; I think the initial numbing injections hurt more than the actual extraction.

The dentist prescribed both antibiotics and painkillers.  Which meant I had to go to the pharmacy, in person, to get them.  First time I've been to the pharmacy in six months, as I've been having all my other medications delivered.  I had a suspicion that this might happen and had mentally prepared myself to do so and had warned my daughter that it was a possibility; she was not happy about it!  I assured her that I would wear two masks - a disposable mask (one of the last ones from the box I bought when undergoing chemo; I still haven't been able to buy any disposable masks after the pandemic) and a fabric mask that I had sewn.

The dentist had put in a wad of gauze to staunch the flow of blood from the place where the tooth was extracted and I was supposed to bite down on it and keep it in place for at least 20 minutes.  If you think it is hard to talk wearing a mask, try talking through two masks while biting down on a wad of gauze!  LOL.  The poor pharmacist!  She remembered me from earlier (in fact, commented on the fact that she hadn't seen me since early March), but, she still had to ask certain questions before she could process my prescription.

Pharmacist:  "What's your name?"  Me: "Whaumble Mumblemumble".  ("Bless", shortened from Bless My Mess, is obviously my online name, my real name is a Sri Lankan name and it is not something most people here find easy to say, in the first place.)

"What's your date of birth?"  "Noemmer enneth enneen innty inth". 

"Would you like a flu vaccine, today?"  "Mummble mummble innurance?"  "Yes, it is covered by your insurance."

So, while I waited for the prescriptions to be filled, I had a flu vaccination, as well!  Woo hoo!  I had been wondering how to go about getting a flu vaccine this year because as far as I know, my primary care doctor's office is still closed!  Now I have both a sore jaw and a sore arm!

I removed the wad of gauze after I came home!  

The dentist had told me not to drink anything for two hours.   I had planned to have a substantial breakfast before I went to the appointment, this morning, but, I only had my usual cup of tea before I went, because I just wasn't hungry for any food.  So, after two hours went by, I drank some water and had some ice cream.  At 6:30 p.m., 6 hours after I had the tooth extracted, I had some iced coffee and took one of the prescribed pain killers.  I will need to have something a little more substantial, later in the evening, because I am supposed to take the antibiotic with food.   

I rested after I came home and went through some mail.  I am feeling OK, especially after taking the painkiller, but, I'll continue to take it easy for the rest of the evening.  Maybe practice the piano and do some filing.  

Today, I am grateful for:

- Dental and medical insurance

- Pain medications

- Flu vaccines

- Cheerful and helpful pharmacy staff

- Ice cream!  

Today's joyful activity was eating ice cream!  

This month's decluttering includes one tooth!

How was your day?


Ground Beef and Potato Stew

Guess who is being spoiled by her neighbor?

If you guessed, "Bless", then, you would be right!  LOL. 

Neighbor S called me again, this evening, and said she made a ground beef and potato dish and would I like to try some?  "Yes, please!" She is such a blessing!  

I'm calling it a stew, because it was thicker than a soup.  I warmed up a bowl of it for my dinner and added some green peas to it:

With Green Peas 

It was delicious!  

Today has been a good day.  The asthma has been kept under control with the help of the inhalers.  I watered the backyard, practiced the piano, did some paperwork (that stuff keeps piling up, no matter what!), washed a pile of dishes, and made a batch of tomato soup, using homemade chicken broth that I had in the freezer, frozen tomatoes, a cut up carrot, some onions, celery, and bell pepper (everything, except the carrot, was from the freezer).  Midway through all that, my hands cramped up, but, I took one of my magnesium supplements, drank some extra water, and rested for a bit until the cramps eased up, and then, continued with the rest of the tasks.  

Tomorrow, I have my dental appointment at noon.   That's the main reason why I made the tomato soup.  I am planning to have that for my dinner, tomorrow, as it will be easy to eat.  I also have ice cream in the freezer and frozen bananas if I want to make the frozen banana dessert or a smoothie.  The last time I had a tooth extracted, I was in pain for days!  I hope it won't be quite as bad, this time!

Today, I am grateful for:
- Neighbor S spoiling me with dinner, again!
- Asthma inhalers
- Phone calls and emails from friends
- Being able to video chat with my daughter
- What I was able to accomplish

Today's joyful activity was being treated to dinner, by my neighbor, again.  

The only thing on the agenda for tomorrow is the dental appointment.  However, if I feel up to it, I might do some more paperwork and filing.  All will depend on how I feel after the tooth extraction.  Wish me well, please!  

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Starting Fall

Dinner: Dolma and Tabbouleh

Happy first day of autumn!  

Yesterday (Monday), was a relatively quiet day for me, due to an asthma flare up that lasted all day.  I did the minimum: washed my bed sheets and remade the bed without any help from Dancer, who was sulking because I didn't give him a third serving of tuna, had my piano lesson in the afternoon, and took the trash cans to the curb for pick up in the morning.  

Today, however, I've felt better,  Still taking it easy, but, I practiced the piano, brought in the trash cans (both mine and neighbor T's) and watered the front garden.

Neighbor S called me in the evening to offer me dinner - homemade dolma (cabbage leaves and tomatoes stuffed with brown rice and ground turkey) and tabbouleh (bulgur salad with fresh mint, tomato, etc.)  I ate some of it for dinner; the rest is in the fridge for another day.

Today, I am grateful for:

- Rescue inhalers

- Kind and generous neighbors

- Technology which enables me to keep in touch with family and friends throughout the world

- Quiet days

- Afternoon naps

Today's joyful activity was relaxing and taking it easy!

Plans for tomorrow include catching up on some housework.

Monday, September 21, 2020

September Meal Planning: Week 3 Review and Week 4

My September Week 3 meal plan was made prior to grocery shopping and was based on what I had in the freezer and pantry.  I put in a grocery order midweek and picked it up on Thursday afternoon.  That resulted in a few changes to the menu plan, as I now had bread!

September Week 3 Meal Plan Options:

Breakfast/Brunch/Lunch:  Cereal with milk, scrambled egg and fried potatoes, pancakes, tuna salad on crackers.

Dinners:  Stringhoppers (rice noodles) with fish curry, leftover cashew curry, and potato curry; Rice with leftover fish curry, cabbage; Rice or noodles with smoked sausage stir fry; leftovers 

Snacks/desserts:  Fruits (fresh/canned), nuts, crackers, cookies, etc.

Here is how it all worked out:

Brunch: Pancakes 
Dinner:  Stringhoppers (rice noodles), fish curry, cashew curry, potato curry, seeni sambol (spicy onion relish)


Snacks/Dessert: Orange, cookie
Brunch: Milk rice, seeni sambol (onion relish), orange juice
Dinner: Stringhoppers and curries
Snacks/Dessert:  Peanuts, edamame, orange

Brunch: Leftover milk rice and onion relish, orange juice
Dinner: Stringhoppers and curries
Snacks/Dessert: Edamame, orange

Brunch: Cereal and milk
Dinner:  Frozen cheese pizza
Snacks/Dessert: Grapes, banana, tortilla chips

Brunch: Bread and onion relish
Dinner:  Hamburger patties
Snacks/Dessert: Banana, grapes, ice cream

Breakfast: Bread and onion relish
Lunch: Hamburger patty with bread  
Dinner: Stringhoppers with potato curry, fish curry, and onion relish
Snacks/Dessert: Grapes, crackers with mango jam, tortilla chips 

Brunch:   French toast
Dinner:  The last of the stringhoppers with curries
Snacks: Banana, grapes, granola bars

I start out Week 4 with a full fridge and freezer!  

September Week 4 Meal Plan Options:

Breakfast/Brunch/Lunch:  Leftover French toast (Monday), cereal with milk, scrambled egg and toast or fried potatoes, pancakes, tuna or egg salad sandwiches, garden salad.

Dinners:  Leftover hamburger patty with salad and corn; chicken stir fry with rice or noodles; soup (Thursday, after tooth extraction), leftovers, 

Snacks/desserts:  Fruits, crackers, tortilla chips, ice cream, etc.

That is the plan, anyway.  Things might change towards the end of the week, after my tooth extraction, depending on how I feel afterwards.  

What are you planning to have this week?

Sunday, September 20, 2020

Quiet Sunday

I've had a quiet day, today.  Nothing very exciting like earthquakes to report!  Just an ordinary, uneventful day for which I am very thankful!  

It was another warm day.  I had French toast for brunch, practiced the piano, checked on neighbor T, took some empty boxes to the recycling bin for her, watched TV, knitted, did several Sudoku puzzles, and chatted with friend R. I had the last of the stringhoppers with fish curry for dinner.  Later in the evening, I video chatted with my daughter.

Today, I am grateful for:
- A quiet, restful, uneventful day
- Being able to do a small service for neighbor T
- Video chatting with my daughter
- Emails from friends
- Moderate air quality

Today's joyful activity was knitting.

Plans for Monday include my piano lesson and doing some housework.

Monday's To Do List:
- Change bed sheets
- Load of laundry (bed sheets/towels)
- Dust living room & dining area
- Clean the fridge
- Take trash cans to the curb for Tuesday trash pick up
- Water the front garden
- Piano lesson

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

Saturday, September 19, 2020

Shake, Rattle, and Roll!

We had an earthquake, last night, at 11:38 p.m.  A moderate earthquake, registering at 4.6 on the Richter scale.  The epicenter was fairly close to me, about 15 miles away, so, I felt it quite strongly.  First a small rattle, followed by a stronger shaking.  As always, the first thought I had was, "I hope this is not the Big One!"  Followed by, "I hope this is not a pre-quake to a stronger one".  Nothing fell off the shelves and everything seemed fine, which is a blessing; we don't need a devastating earthquake on top of everything else!  It was just another reminder to be prepared and ready, though.  I was still up and awake when this earthquake happened, but, nighttime quakes are one of the reasons why I keep a bag with a few earthquake supplies near my bed!  In fact, I had just checked the batteries on my flash lights, just earlier in the evening.

I had just finished video chatting with my daughter, when the quake happened, so I called her back to tell her we had an earthquake and I was doing fine.  Then, I watched the news to find out more about the quake.  My cousin called, too, to check on me, and we chatted a bit.  

Fortunately, there weren't any other quakes and I went to bed around 1:30 a.m.  I was tired and fell asleep almost right away.  I woke up, once, at 5:00 a.m., when another cousin texted me in response to my text the evening before, but, I went back to sleep and slept till later in the morning.  

Today's weather forecast says the air quality is fair and I can see a clear blue sky.  My asthma is better, but, I am taking it easy, today, watching some of my favorite cooking shows on TV.  Friend R called in the morning and I chatted with her for a bit.  Later, neighbor T's daughter brought over a spare key to her mother's back door, so that, in the future, if there is an emergency, I can let myself in to check on her.  

My plans for today include cooking the chicken breast I put to marinate, yesterday, knitting, and practicing the piano.

Today, I am grateful for:

- Last night's earthquake wasn't the Big One and didn't cause any damage

- Phone calls from family and friends

- Better air quality

- Cooking shows on TV

- Warm weather and bright sunshine

Today's joyful activity is just relaxing.

How is your Saturday coming along?  

Friday, September 18, 2020

Organizing the Freezer on Friday

Today was a fairly productive day, at least until I had an asthma flare-up in the evening.  

In the morning, I did two loads of laundry, checked on my neighbor T, and chatted with cousin P.  The radiology center where I had the mammogram on Wednesday called to ask where the previous mammogram was done to request a copy for comparison, so, at least, they are working on it.  

In the afternoon, I did a freezer inventory and organized the freezer a little better.  This is the freezer that comes with my side-by-side fridge/freezer (I don't have a second freezer).  I had organized it, earlier, but, the last grocery pick up I did messed it up a bit as I shoved things in where they would fit!  As a result, things became a bit disorganized.  Today, I took everything out, shelf by shelf, grouped things so that they were not all over the place and wrote down what I have.  

Then, I portioned out the trays of chicken breast halves that I bought, yesterday, and froze most of them, in packages of 2 breast halves per package.  I kept one piece to cook over the weekend - cut it up into small pieces and left it to marinate in the fridge.  I plan to make a chicken stir-fry with it. 

After that, I cut up the chub of ground beef.  I had been wanting hamburgers, recently, so, I decided to form all three pounds of ground beef into hamburger patties.  I made 16 patties and froze 12 of them in packages of two each.  I cooked the last four and had two for dinner, tonight; the remaining two are in the fridge for another meal.

By that time, it was 5:00 p.m. and M was here to tend to the garden.  I didn't have a specific task for him, so he watered and tidied the garden for me.  

My asthma flare up started around that time; I was talking on the phone with my daughter and realized that I was wheezing.  I took two puffs of my rescue inhaler and turned on the air purifier.

I've been taking it easy, since then.  I practiced the piano for a little, spoke on the phone with friend R, and watched news.  I needed to take two more puffs of the rescue inhaler, a few minutes ago; I am waiting for it to take effect.

Today, I am grateful for:

- Rescue inhalers and air purifiers

- M tending to the garden for me

- Freezers and a freezer inventory

- Working appliances and the electricity to run them

- Chatting on the phone with family and friends

Today's joyful activity was organizing the freezer!  Maybe not everyone's idea of a joyful activity, but, it brought me much joy to see what I had in there and know that it is somewhat organized!  

Plans for tomorrow include cooking the chicken stir-fry. 

How was your Friday and what are your plans for the weekend? 

Thursday, September 17, 2020

Appointments and Groceries on Thursday

Thursday morning, I went to my appointment with the podiatrist.  My original appointment had been scheduled for early May, but, I had been postponing it, due to my reluctance to venture out during the pandemic.  Today, I finally kept the appointment and went in.  The podiatrist was concerned about my big toe that I had hurt when I slipped in the the shower, back in July, but, eventually decided that I hadn't broken or torn anything and the toe didn't need to be X-rayed.  Even so, he told me I should have come in to have it checked, when I first hurt it!

My appointment was at 10:30 a.m., but, by the time I was seen and drove home, it was already noon.  I had some milk and cereal for brunch and rested a bit.  

The grocery store texted me to say that they didn't have some of the items I had ordered and offered substitutes for some of them (a different brand of frozen battered fish fillets to the store brand I had ordered and a four-cheese pizza instead of the pepperoni pizza I wanted); I accepted the substitutions, as they don't charge extra for the substitutions.  Other items I ordered, including the shrimp potstickers and the store brand mango fruit cups, were simply unavailable and they could only give me two cans of condensed milk instead of the six that I wanted.  Oh, well.  That was a stock up item and I will order them from another store or try again at a later time.

My pick up slot was between 3:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m.  I got to the store a few minutes before 3:00 p.m., but, that was not a problem.  A few minutes later, a store employee brought out my groceries and put them in the trunk of my car.  There is normally a $6.95 service charge for online ordering and pick up, but, the store has waived it during the pandemic, so, it was free of charge!

I called friend R from the grocery store parking lot and said I'll be coming over directly - I had a tray of chicken and a bag of curry leaf sprigs that she had wanted.  In exchange, she gave me two packets of the tea that I prefer and a packet of mustard seeds that she had obtained for me, as well as some disposable masks (worth their weight in gold, these days!) and a new winter jacket that someone had given her last Christmas, which was a little too snug for her, to be given to my daughter!

Then, I came home and disinfected everything and put away most of the groceries.  I didn't put away the frozen pizza and decided to have that for my dinner, instead.  It has been 6 months (or more) since I last had a pizza; that's the only reason why I turned on the oven on a day when it was 100F!  LOL.  I ate nearly 1/3 of the pizza!  The rest of the pizza was sliced into four pieces, individually wrapped in foil and frozen for another day.  

I didn't take any pictures of the groceries I bought, today, as I was trying to get it all in the fridge before the frozen items thawed and the ice cream melted even more! 

But, here's a list of what I bought:

Frozen battered fish fillets, 10 count = $5.99

1 frozen cheese pizza = $4.99

3 trays boneless/skinless chicken breasts @$1.67/lb  ($6.36 + $6.71 + $6.08) = $19.15

3 lb. chub ground beef = $11.97

1 loaf sliced sandwich bread = $1.49

1 loaf French bread = $1.00

1 jar sweet relish = $3.29

1 cantaloupe = $1.50

4 large peaches @$.99/lb = $1.91

4 bananas @$.59/lb = $.97

2+ lb. cotton candy grapes @$3.99/lb = $8.62

2+ lb. red grapes @ $1.99/lb = $4.70

1lb. bag carrots = $.99

1 cucumber = $.99

1 iceberg lettuce = $1.29

1 zucchini @$1.49/lb = $.60

1 broccoli crown @$1.99/lb = $1.45

1/2 gal. whole milk = $2.29

2 cans condensed milk, @$1.99 = $3.98

1 container orange juice = $2.99

1 container vanilla ice cream = $2.98

2 boxes cereal @ $1.79 = $3.58

5 bags ground coffee @$4.99 = $24.95 

1 bag tortilla chips = $2.99

1 doz. eggs = $2.99

Total = $117.65

One of the trays of chicken was for friend R and the coffee is for my daughter (for whenever she comes down for a visit; she will take some back with her).  

I put my two trays of chicken and the chub of ground beef in the fridge for today.  Tomorrow, I will portion it all up and freeze, or maybe cook some of it and then freeze.  

My pre-Covid grocery budget used to be $75 for the month plus another $25 for eating out.  But, I've gone over that during the pandemic, as I no longer grocery shop in person at the ethnic stores where I used to get really good deals and I have been stocking up.  Since I am no longer eating out (or getting take out food), I decided to add that $25 to my grocery budget and raised it to $100 per month.  But, I think I will increase my grocery budget to $125, this month, since I have already spent $5 earlier in the month for milk and grapes and I spent almost $118, today.  Of course, I didn't grocery shop in August and some of the items I bought today are for stocking up (and others were treats!).   

I rested in the evening, practiced the piano, called neighbor T to check on her, washed the dishes and cleaned the kitchen, a little bit.  

On the To Do List for tomorrow: water the indoor plants, process the chicken and ground beef, and do a load of laundry.

Today I am grateful for:

- The appointment with the podiatrist went well

- A safe drive there and back

- Being able to order groceries online and free pick up

- Friend R getting me my tea and sharing some of her masks with me

- Being able to increase the grocery budget as needed

Today's joyful activity was visiting my friend, even if very briefly.  

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

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Wednesday's Activities

Another warm day!  106F at 3:00 p.m.!  The air quality is considered to be still poor, but, it was a little less hazy, today.  I was even able to detect a hint of blue in the sky!  A hazy blue, but, blue, nonetheless!

Today, in the morning, I called the radiology center to confirm my afternoon appointment.  I don't know what made me confirm their location, too, but, I am so glad that I did, because apparently, I was to go to a different location than the one listed on the letter of authorization!  I don't know if they have several different locations or, if the address on the letter is where their headquarters are located!  But, I went to the location the person on the phone told me to go to.  I had been there, before, and one good thing about this location is that they have free parking!  In any case, I went early enough for the appointment that I could drive to the other location if necessary!  But, apparently, I was at the right place.  I had to fill out some papers, but, was called in early, before my appointment time, and I had all three procedures done - a mammogram, an ultrasound, and a bone density scan.  The technicians were very pleasant and cheerful, which I appreciated very much.  The results will be sent to my oncologist's office and I will find out the diagnosis when I go for my appointment in October (unless I am notified earlier).  

I had showered in the morning, before I went to my appointment, but, when I came home, I realized that I had to shower again, in order to remove all the gel they put on me for the ultrasound and all the touching of machines and my hair touching the surfaces on which I had to lie down for the ultrasound and bone density scan!  I generally don't wash my hair twice a day, but, I did so, today!  It's squeaky clean, now!  LOL.

I called neighbor T in the morning before I left and checked on her.  She said she was a bit shaken up and sore, but, she's taking some over-the-counter pain medication and managing.  Her daughter wasn't there when I called, but, she was coming over in the early afternoon, T said.

In the evening, my daughter helped me to order some groceries.  I haven't done a major grocery shopping since the end of July!  I wanted to get some fresh produce, bread, orange juice, chicken, etc., plus a couple of treats!  I hope I will be able to get everything I ordered (I won't know until sometime tomorrow, when they go to gather the items for the order; I said substitutions were OK, except for the condensed milk!).

Today, I am grateful for:

- Being able to get to the correct location for my medical tests!

- Getting all three procedures done in one go.

- Cheerful technicians who are working under what has to be stressful conditions

- A safe drive there and back

- Free parking

- Daughter helping me with ordering groceries

Today's joyful activity was chatting with my daughter.

Tomorrow, I have an appointment with the podiatrist, in the morning.  That is another medical appointment I have been postponing since April!  Later, in the afternoon, I will pick up my groceries and deliver the items I will be picking up for friend R.  Not sure what else I'll be able to get done, tomorrow.  

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


Tuesday, September 15, 2020


Mid-September, already!  The days are flying!

Monday was a good day.  The air quality was a little better, it was less hazy, there was more sunshine, and it was warm!  It was comfortably cool inside the house, but, almost 100F outside!  My kind of temperature and I was happy!

In the morning, I replied to blog comments, read and commented on a couple of blogs, and practiced the piano.

In the afternoon, I had my piano lesson.  Why is it that I play quite well when I am practicing and then, make silly mistakes when I have my lesson?  S was very patient with me and I received a new song (Santa Lucia) to learn, in addition to the current pieces.

I also did some cooking.  I made a fish curry, using a piece of frozen seer fish (also known as king mackerel), a potato curry, and some onion relish (seeni sambol).  I had these curries with some frozen stringhoppers (a type of noodles made from rice flour) for my dinner: 

Dinner: Stringhoppers, Curries (Potato, Cashews, Fish), and Onion Sambol

Later in the evening, I received a delivery of one of the two air purifiers my daughter had ordered for me and the two spare air filters:

New Air Purifier

When I called my daughter to tell her about the delivery, she reminded me that I should have received two purifiers.  But, only one was delivered.  So, she contacted the customer service of the store we bought it from and they were very nice and said they will send a replacement purifier.  

On Monday, I was grateful for:
- The better air quality and weather
- S's patience during my piano lesson
- Receiving the air purifier
- Phone calls and emails from friends
- Video chatting with my daughter

Monday's joyful activity was setting up the air purifier!

Today (Tuesday), the air quality and weather are about the same as they were, yesterday, although today's temperature was a little lower, with a high of 95F.   

I practiced the piano, watered the garden, and brought the trash cans in.  I made milk rice for brunch and had it with some of the seeni sambol that I made, yesterday.  Dinner will be leftover stringhoppers and curry.  I also made some phone calls to check on a couple of friends that I haven't heard from, recently.

In the afternoon, neighbor T's daughter K called me to say that her mother had fallen in the shower; K was with her and had called the paramedics.  She just wanted me to know so that I wouldn't get worried when I saw the paramedics arrive.  I called K a short while ago and she said her mother was doing okay.  She didn't have to go to the hospital, but, obviously shaken up quite a bit and bruised; K was staying the night with her mother.  I'm glad T was not hurt.  

Today, my daughter left her apartment building to venture outside for the first time in 6 months.  Her office is moving to another location and, although that move won't take place until next March at the earliest, they are not renewing their lease at the current location and employees have been asked to take turns coming in to the office to pack up their files and other items they want moved to the new location.  Daughter walked to the office (just under 2 miles from her apartment) and back, as she didn't want to take the bus.  She said the air quality was moderate, today, so, the walk wasn't too bad (she, too, has asthma).  

Today, I am grateful for:
- Daughter had a safe trip to the office and back
- Neighbor T is not too badly hurt
- Friends I called are doing well
- Better weather and air quality
- Medical insurance

Today's joyful activity was chatting with a couple of friends.

Plans for tomorrow include going for my annual mammogram and, maybe, a bone density scan (not sure if they will do both procedures on one day).  

How is your week going?  What are your plans for tomorrow? 

Monday, September 14, 2020

September Meal Planning: Week 2 Update and Week 3

I started out the week with good intentions!  These were my menu options for the week -

September Week 2 Meal Plan Options:

Breakfast/Brunch/Lunch:  Cereal with milk, French toast✓, scrambled egg and fried potatoes✓, boiled cassava with spicy onion sambol✓, pancakes✓.

Dinners:  Pasta with meat sauce✓; coconut flat bread with onion sambol✓; rice with fish curry hot dogs and cabbage✓; leftovers✓. 

Snacks/desserts:  Fresh fruits (oranges✓, apples), canned fruits, muffins✓, crackers✓, cereal✓, cookies✓, etc.

This is how those good intentions worked out:

Coconut Flat Bread

Brunch: Spaghetti and sauce 
Dinner:  Savory coconut flat bread
Snacks/Dessert: Crackers
Brunch: Coconut flat bread
Dinner: Spaghetti and sauce
Snacks/Dessert:  More coconut flat bread!

Breakfast: Crackers with peanut butter
Lunch: Rice, cashew curry, cabbage, hot dogs with red onions and tomato chutney 
Dinner: Coconut flat bread
Snacks/Dessert: cookie, orange

Lunch:Rice, cashew curry, cabbage, hot dogs

Brunch: French toast
Dinner:  Leftovers from Wednesday's lunch
Snacks/Dessert: cookie, orange, cereal with milk

Brunch:  Scrambled egg, fried potato
Dinner:  Spaghetti and sauce
Snacks/Dessert: Orange, muffin

Brunch:  Spaghetti and sauce
Dinner: Rice, cabbage, cashew curry, hot dog cooked with onions and chutney
Snacks/Dessert: Orange

Brunch:   Boiled cassava with spicy onion sambol (katta sambol)
Dinner:  Pancakes with spicy/sweet onion sambol (seeni sambol)
Snacks: Peanuts, orange

I did well enough, I guess.  I didn't stray too much from my meal options and I didn't go hungry!

On to Week 3!  I still haven't done any grocery shopping, so, I am cooking from the freezer and pantry, this week, too.  

September Week 3 Meal Plan Options:

Breakfast/Brunch/Lunch:  Cereal with milk, scrambled egg and fried potatoes, pancakes, tuna salad on crackers.

Dinners:  Stringhoppers (rice noodles) with fish curry, leftover cashew curry, and potato curry; Rice with leftover fish curry, cabbage; Rice or noodles with smoked sausage stir fry; leftovers 

Snacks/desserts:  Fruits (fresh/canned), nuts, crackers, cookies, etc.

How about you?  What are your meal plans for the week?

Sunday, September 13, 2020

Hazy Sunshine!

Today was a little better!  We had some hazy sunshine!  

Last night, I felt very tired and not quite myself.  I had been feeling light-headed on and off throughout the day, yesterday.  I actually went to bed before 12:30 a.m.!   And fell asleep within a few minutes.  I woke up a couple of times during the night and, because I was concerned about being dehydrated, I made it a point to drink some water each time.  

I slept for over 9 hours and woke up only because Dancer was demanding his breakfast!  He was carrying on as if he was starving, although he still had access to his bowl of kibbles.  I still felt a bit light-headed and looking down made me feel as if the floor was spinning!  I've had this happen before, too.  Apparently, changes in the air pressure cause my sinuses to get blocked and that affects my inner ear and balance.  The thing is, since I fainted and fell in the bathroom, that one time (from being dehydrated), I get nervous when I feel this.  So, I took it easy, today, too.  That feeling of being light-headed went away in the evening, after I lay down and dozed a bit on the sofa.  

However, today, the air quality was a little better, the haze wasn't quite as thick, and there was some hazy sunshine!  It brightened up my mood, no end!  I ventured outside for a few minutes to collect the mail from yesterday (my medication refills were delivered) and to throw out the recycling and the trash.  There was a fine, powdery layer of ash on top of the trash bin lids!  No wonder my asthma was acting up!

Today, I practiced the piano, knitted, watched some TV, and ran the dishwasher.  Friend R called in the evening and we chatted for a bit.  Later, I video chatted with my daughter.

Today, I am grateful for:

- Slightly better air quality

- Hazy sunshine

- Working appliances (dishwasher)

- Phone calls and emails from friends

- My medication being delivered

Today's joyful activity was playing the piano.

Monday's To Do List:
- Piano lesson
- Change bed sheets
- Load of laundry (bed sheets/towels)
- Dust living room & dining area
- Clean the fridge
- Take trash cans to the curb for Tuesday trash pick up
- Water the front garden
- Cook

How was your weekend?  What are your plans for tomorrow?

Saturday, September 12, 2020

More Hazy Days

Yesterday (Friday) was another hazy day with poor air quality and no sunshine.  I didn't feel motivated to do anything!  I practiced the piano, pulled out some yarn to knit a scarf, watched several documentaries about 9/11 (hard to believe it has been 19 years, already!), spoke with friend R and aunt C, and took it easy.  Later in the afternoon, M came to tend to the garden and I gave him the option of taking the day off due to the air quality, but, he said he was fine and mowed the back yard for me.  

Today (Saturday) has been yet another hazy day with poor air quality and no sunshine.  Even though it is supposed to be warm outside, it has been cool inside the house, both yesterday and today.  A little too cool for my liking at not quite 70F when I woke up and warming up to below 75F in the afternoon.  I am back to wearing a sweater and socks!  I haven't been feeling very motivated to do anything, so, I've been taking it easy and relaxing.

These days, little baby possum has been visiting the back steps:

Baby Possum

Looking for Leftover Cat Food

It is apparently part of the clean up crew!  Eating up the small bits of kibble the cats have left!  I've seen the bigger possum, around too - maybe the mama possum.  But, the baby one is cuter!  

On these smoky, hazy days, I am grateful for:

- My daughter and I are safe from the fires

- My daughter was able to order herself a second air purifier (she really needs it, up there)

- M was able to tend to the garden

- The yarn stash

- Asthma inhalers

My joyful activities have been video chatting with my daughter and knitting.

How are you doing?  What are your plans for Sunday?

Thursday, September 10, 2020

Hazy Days

Today, there was a grey haze in my area from the nearby fires, accompanied by poor air quality.  The haze blocked much of the sunlight and the temperature was cool. 

I spent a quiet day, today.  I didn't feel very energetic and the poor air quality caused my asthma to act up.  I practiced the piano, did a little paperwork, did the dishes and wiped down the kitchen counters, called the pharmacy in response to a text that my medications were ready for pick up and requested they be mailed to me, watered the fruit trees in the backyard in the morning (picked some oranges, too) and watered the front in the early evening.  You can see how the recent heat impacted the plants:

Sun-scorched Schefflera in the Backyard

Succulents in the Front

But, the plants will recover.  It's nothing compared to the damage caused by the wildfires that are currently raging.

In the afternoon, my former colleague called me and we spoke about the medical insurance paperwork.  He assured me that I still had plenty of time and asked me to update him once I've spoken with Social Security in October.  I felt much better after I had spoken with him.

Today, I am grateful for:

- My daughter and I are safe from the fires

- Asthma medications

- Water for the garden

- Freshly picked oranges from my tree

- My former colleague reassuring me about the insurance paperwork 

Today's joyful activity was speaking with my former colleague and being reassured that my paperwork will be timely.

Plans for tomorrow include some house cleaning, provided the air quality is good.  If not, I will take it easy, again.

How was your day?  What are your plans for tomorrow?