Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas Eve!

I have a moment while I'm waiting for milk to scald. I am making Pioneer Woman's cinnamon rolls this morning. I do hope my neighbors are home today to share them with; I would hate to be forced to eat all of these myself! I've never made these before; I'll let you know how they turn out.

If you haven't used your Hallmark coupons that I mentioned here yet, today is the last day. I went to the local Hallmark store last night and scored two big rolls of wrapping paper for $1.33 total, or .66 each - and that is including tax. You lucky folks in tax-free states will do even better. Since I only needed one coupon and printed two, I gave the other one to Tom who is going today to see what he can find. Yes, I have indoctrinated my children into the world of couponing! There are worse things to pass on to your children.

I probably would have stayed and found something else to use my second coupon on, but on the way into the store I slipped on ice right outside the store and landed on my you-know-what. Jerry helped me up and by the time we had walked around the store a few minutes, my wrist was aching pretty badly and I couldn't move my hand, so I didn't spend too much time shopping. But there were bargains to be had, and that comes before pain any day! This morning my left wrist, elbow, and er, posterior, are a little sore, but nothing's broken, anyway!

As I'm typing this, I am keeping an eye on my neighbor's cat, who is currently in the top of one of our trees. I know that logically cats don't actually get stuck in the tops of trees, otherwise there would be dead cats lying around the bottoms of trees, but still I can't help but wonder if this guy needs help. I walked outside to talk to him and see if I could coax him down, but he just stared at me. Here's what I saw -






Well, my cinnamon rolls need me now, and I have lots of other things to do, so have a wonderful Merry Christmas Eve, y'all!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Yummmmmm!!!!!



I made peanut butter bars last night. Oh my. It's just like a GIANT Reese's Peanut Butter Cup. There goes that hour on the treadmill. Oh, well. The recipe is on my Recipes page - you really should try it.

Now I'm off to make myself and my house beautiful. A long shot, I know! Jerry is on his way home from Delaware and I haven't seen my husband in about two weeks. Yes, we talk a gajillion times a day, but that's not the point. I miss my husband! After 27 years of marriage, I still get butterflies thinking about seeing him again. Awwww...................

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Final Tally


This was the measurement in the side yard.



The cat loved being out in it this morning, but he looks
pretty disgruntled here!



The back deck and porch.



The back deck steps.



Front of the house. My Christmas flag got wrapped around the
flag pole, but there is a drift on the sidewalk underneath that is
up to my thighs, so it will have to wait!



I don't think Tom will be going anywhere soon.



Lamppost with a top hat.



Bird feeder and bird bath.



My beloved chaise lounge.



The snow has stopped. Darn. I was enjoying it, too! The final tally on snowfall amount is 16", 15", 13", 12.5", and 10", depending on where in my yard I measured! Last night as it was tapering off at around 11 PM I measured on my chaise lounge on the back deck because it didn't get a whole lot of wind and I thought the measurement might be fairly accurate there. That measured 16". Then this morning when I measured it, it was 15", so some might have blown off. But I think that's probably the most accurate measurement, as the rest of the yard has drifts, with hills and valleys of snow, making the measurement off. In any case, it's a lot of snow, and we are definitely playing in it today. And I was excited about snow on my blog post of 12/05! Little did I know......

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Oh, The Weather Outside Is Frightful - Not Really.


This is what I woke up to this morning. In this picture
I love the contrast between the lights and the grayness of the day.



The back deck. That large round thing is my wonderful, comfortable, adjustable, nap-worthy chaise lounge that my wonderful, comfortable, adjustable, nap-worthy husband bought me last year.



Christmas lights shining through the snow. Festive, no?



This is my birdbath. No birds were harmed in the making of this blog entry.


I am loving this snow. I measured it when I got up this morning and it was 9.5 inches on my front step. There's so much snow to play with, and even more is supposed to fall during the day today. Yay! I think I'll go out later and make a snowman. And a snowlady. And snowchildren. And their in-laws. You get the picture - there's a lot of snow!

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

For The Creatively Challenged


I admit it - I am creatively challenged, but reading The Nester's blog has inspired me to get out of my comfort zone (you know, must be storebought/perfect/color-matched etc., etc.) and try some things. I made a ragamuffin last night and hung it in the bedroom. It was not my intention to amuse my boys into fits of laughter, but that was an unfortunate side effect. It may not stay in the bedroom (it may not stay in the house at all!), but I must admit - I like it. It has grown on me and I like it. So there, boys. And to show that I have no dignity whatsoever, I have posted a picture of it. The cat must like it too, apparently.

P.S. - Check the Mr. and Mrs. pillowcases! I LOVE them! I found them at a yard sale a couple of years ago. They are very old with very old embroidery, so they are the kind of pillows that are nonfunctional - the kind that annoy you every night because you have to remove them from the bed and then put them back on the bed in the morning. Oh, well - it's worth it just to see them there!

Saturday, December 05, 2009

It's Snowing!


Yay!!! It's snowing!!!! I love snow!!! Can you tell?! Could I possibly use any more exclamation points?! Here's my truck with proof on the hood!!! And please, no comments about why the truck is there and not in the garage - Jerry even specifically cleaned his "manly" stuff out enough to make room for it this week but I didn't park it in there yet. Oops.

I Dare You To Sit Still!

While the rest of the world is probably listening to Christmas music right now, I'm listening to ska music while I do stuff I need to do today. The boys got me started listening to ska and I have to admit that I like it a lot. I'm very glad that the boys and I share tastes in music. When Andy and I go to Delaware we usually blast Streetlight Manifesto and Reel Big Fish in the Tahoe while we travel. It makes for a much more enjoyable trip! Here's a video of Streetlight - I dare you to keep still listening - something has to be tapping; a hand or a foot or something! The talent these guys have is amazing; the horns are great and their energy makes me tired just watching them!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

$5.00 Magazine Sale at Amazon

I put this post on my Frugal Finds page, but wanted to be sure everyone saw it, not just the couponers among us!

Amazon is having a great sale on magazine subscriptions until 12/01. There are 10 listed for $5.00 each here, plus there are more with $3.00, $5.00 and $10.00 off listed here. The discount will be taken off when you go to checkout, so don't be worried if you don't see it when you click on the item. I used Swagbucks to get myself a subscription to Country Living for $5.00. Merry Early Christmas to me!

Yay! New Content!

I've finally gotten around to adding something to my blogroll. It is Dear Brother's blog. You can access it by going to my blogroll page where the link will be on the right. You can't miss it - it's the only entry I have! I'll be adding others sometime, I promise.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

A Chuckle For You

I came across this the other day. The boys and I found it thoroughly amusing, as we all like Queen music and well, we have a strange sense of humor.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Post Thanksgiving 2009

Betcha can't guess what we had for lunch Friday. And today. And possibly tomorrow.........

We had a great Thanksgiving, as usual. It was just the five of us. The menu consisted of:
Turkey - betcha didn't see that one coming, stuffing, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, broccoli casserole, gravy, biscuits, cranberry jelly, cheesecake, sweet potato pie, and pecan pie. The links for these recipes will be posted sometime today if time permits.

We had a slight change of plans Thanksgiving morning. For the last few years I have been brining our turkeys and then smoking them on the grill. (I initially had just typed "smoking them" in the last sentence, but I just knew some wiseacre would write and ask how to roll them, so I added "on the grill")! I put the turkey in the brine Wednesday night and Thursday morning when it was time to put the bird on, the grill wouldn't work. I use the gas grill for this because I only use one burner which the hickory chips sit on, and the other burners are off and the turkey sits over these. The charcoal grill would be too small to allow the turkey to cook over indirect heat.

We have never had a problem with the grill, so of course it figures it might as well not work on Thanksgiving! Anyway, I roasted it in the oven. I was still determined to get some type of smoking with it, so I put a pan of wet hickory chips on my oven floor. It certainly was not smoked like it would have been on the grill, and it may even be debatable if the chips did very much at all, but I felt better! At least the brine itself gave it a good flavor and it was extremely juicy.

It was a very good (and filling!) day. We all ate entirely too much. But really, isn't that the purpose of Thanksgiving? To eat until you need to loosen your waistband? Kidding aside, I was (and am) thankful for everything the Lord has given me. As grace was said at the table on Thanksgiving, I was reminded of just how much I have been blessed with, and was (and am) grateful. I hope everyone had a wonderful day too. Happy Post Thanksgiving, y'all!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Home Again, Home Again

We are back home again. Andy and I have been back and forth to Delaware for about the last month and then spent the last two weeks there. Yesterday's drive home was not very enjoyable. I didn't even have any coffee before we left, it rained and was foggy the entire trip, and I seriously had trouble keeping my eyes open! There's just something about rainy days that can lull me off to sleep. Granted, when you're behind the wheel it's not a good idea. One good thing was that traffic wasn't bad and the other drivers were actually decent. No one was passing anyone, and no one seemed to be in a big hurry. Well, except when we got closer to home. We knew we were back in our home county again because the drivers started acting like they usually do here. We knew we were truly home then because of the ignorant drivers. Oh, well. No offense to any of my blog readers who may live in the same county as I do, but I am pretty sure you don't drive stupidly because if you did, you wouldn't be the kind of person who would read a blog like mine!

Anyway, I have a ton of things to do to get ready for Thanksgiving tomorrow. I'll write more about that when I have time. I also haven't unpacked yet. And I have to work. And brine the turkey. And make bread for the stuffing. And clean the house. And, and, and..........hmmm, maybe I'll take a nap instead.

P.S. to Susie who left a comment for my blog - after driving home three hours from Delaware yesterday in the rain, I guess my brain was soggy and foggy too. On the email I received to moderate comments, I intended to erase the email itself; not reject the comment. I'm not sure what happened, but I think I must have chosen the wrong choice because your comment isn't posted and when I went to check it said it had been rejected. Sorry about that. Please comment again and I'll be more awake this time when moderating comments!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Great Week!

Not only was it a pretty good week all the way around, but I had a pretty good week couponing, too. I have updated this week's lists on Frugal Finds. My total for all the stores this week came to $193.63 before sales and coupons; what I actually paid was $54.27. That's 72% off! How great is that?!

Now I'm off to do my real job! Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Friday, November 13, 2009

New Content!

After a painfully slow start, I am finally making headway on my links. Click on the links above to see what I've been up to. Be kind; it's still a work in progress!

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Swagbucks

I wrote about Swagbucks in this post, but I wanted to follow up on it for anyone who might have still been on the fence about using it. I used their toolbar feature so that there is a search box right at the top of my page every time I'm on the web. This works out particularly well because when I'm working and need to look something up, I just go there to search, and earn Swagbucks at the same time. Although there are lots and lots of items that you can use your Swagbucks towards, I chose to trade mine in for Amazon gift cards. So far I have earned $25.00 in gift cards and am on the way to earning another one (each $5.00 gift card from Amazon is 45 Swagbucks). That's $25.00 I have to spend at Amazon just for doing what I do during the course of a day on the web anyway. How great is that?!

Sunday, November 01, 2009

A Fine Day for Golf

Andy and I were in Delaware last week and last Sunday Dad, Jerry, Andy, my dear brother and his children and I went to the local driving range to hit a bucket (or several buckets!) of balls. It was a beautifully crisp fall day. Ahh.....I love fall. Anyway, it was a great day!











Saturday, October 31, 2009

Construction Zone!

Just wanted to let everyone know that I'm in the process of making some changes to my blog, so if things on here seem wonky now and then, well, it's just me! I only have time to work on it in bits and pieces, though, so thank you for your patience.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Tom's New Blog

Tom has started a new blog. The link for it is over to the right. Well, we (his family) seem to be the only ones who call him Tom; the rest of the world knows him as Tommy! You have to see this movie that he made, with special effects.

Well, off to work - just wanted to put in a plug for my kid's stuff!

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Such a deal!

Here's a deal for ya - I was looking at next week's (09/09 - 09/15) sale paper from Food Lion and I saw that there was a very good loss leader (loss leaders are the things usually on the front page of the ad, usually a very good price, and the store generally won't make a lot of money off of - they are used to lure you into the store to buy the stuff that they will make money on). Wisk laundry detergent, regularly priced at $6.49, is sale priced at $2.99, with a limit of 2. The sale price alone is good with a savings of about 58% right there, but here is a place you can print a coupon for $1.00 off of that, bringing the price down to $1.99 per bottle, making a savings of 72%. After you print one coupon, hit your browser's back button and print out another one. The limit is two coupons from the site so if you try again it will come up and say that you have reached your print limit. I think I have a new hobby - this coupon thing is getting fun!

Oh, and I want to clear up something I wrote in my last post - when I wrote that I use the treadmill, Bowflex and Wii Fit, the problem is that I don't use any of these consistently - sporadically at best - otherwise I would have lost more than 25 pounds by now!

Guess what I just did?!

Guess what I just did?! I just registered for a belly dancing class. Go ahead - read that sentence again. I'll wait.

Okay, now that you've recovered your sensibilities, let me tell you about it. I had received the latest program offerings from our county parks and recreation department and was absently thumbing through it thinking that maybe I'd like to take a class in something, and lo and behold, Beginning Belly Dancing caught my eye. I bought a DVD to teach myself a while back, but never actually got around to it more than once, so I figured I needed something a little more structured! After just one time with the DVD my arms and middle were sore, so I know it must do something.

I'm looking for something different in terms of exercising. The heart rate monitor I wrote about a while back is connected to software in which I input my exercise heart rate, progress, weight, and stuff like that. Every so often there is a Fitness Challenge in which anyone who belongs to the group can participate and challenge themselves for 12 weeks. The latest challenge began yesterday and I really want to do well this time. Last time I came in #328 out of 2,211 participants, so not too bad, and between that challenge and the one before it I lost 25 pounds, but I still have quite a bit more to lose. So, I was looking for a different form of exercise besides the treadmill, Bowflex and Wii Fit that I do now.

I'm also dragging my poor friend kicking and screaming to this class. When I asked her if she'd go to the class with me, she asked if there wasn't a geriatric quilting class or something else we could take! She is so funny; when she finally agreed to take the class, she told me not to expect her to be as enthusiastic about it as I was; her husband was enthusiastic enough for the both of them!

Also, had to update on my coupon adventures. I made a last trip to Kmart on Saturday night before the double coupon event ended and got even more stuff! When I went the first time they were out of stock on a lot of items that I wanted and they had restocked by the time I went back on Saturday. My total for Saturday's trip came to around $80.00 and after coupons it was $30.00. But my coupon adventures were not over yet! I saw that Giant had Oscar Mayer bacon Buy One Get One Free, which in itself was a great deal, but I also had COUPONS! So I went to Giant yesterday and bought 6 packages of bacon. My total came to $40.92, then the Buy One Get One amounts came off, then my coupons came off, and my grand total was $11.97, which works out to roughly $1.99 per package, which is 64% off the regular price.

Well, that's all for right now on this rainy Tuesday morning. Guess I'd better get to work now. Happy Tuesday!

Friday, September 04, 2009


It's funny that it doesn't look like so much spread out here, but if you look at the individual items and add up what their cost is, you'll get an idea of how much I really saved. Oh, and there were two Coffee Mate creamers in the refrigerator and we forgot to take out to add to the picture!


The Damage

Okay, here's the rundown on my Kmart shopping trip. When I walked in the door my very first stop was at the customer service desk where I verified what I had been told the day before. It was true! The lady said I could use as many coupons as I wanted. Little did she know! The employees at Kmart were the absolute best. Every single one of them was nice- even the poor cashier who had to scan my coupons! At the end, two other employees and two managers walked up to the register where the cashier was (still!) scanning coupons and excitedly waited for my total! I think it was interesting that one of the managers was in line behind me with a handful of coupons herself!

While the employees were wonderful, unfortunately, the customers were complete horses' patoots. Well, except for one nice lady. Whenever anyone got in line behind me, I nicely let them know that I had a LOT of coupons and that I would probably be a while checking out. Every one of them said, "Oh, that's okay. I can wait." Within five minutes they were giving me dirty looks, rude comments, and fuming out of the checkout lane to go to another register. I don't understand this - I told them right up front, and there were other (faster) options of checking out. Except for the one lady I mentioned - when I told her I had numerous coupons, she just smiled and said, "Honey, waiting in line doesn't bother me at all. If that's all I have to worry about, I'm a lucky woman. I have a grandson with a brain tumor and compared to that, waiting in a line is nothing." I told her that I admired her perspective. More people should be like that.

I was going to list all the items here, but changed my mind. It's too much stuff! When the cashier finished ringing me up (before coupons) my total came to $353.69. Then the coupons started. And went on, and on, and on, and on............... and eventually my new total came up and it was - drum roll please - $119.35. That is a savings of roughly 67%. Several of the items ended up being free, almost all the deodorants, toothbrushes and toothpastes. As I was deciding what products to buy, I would figure out my savings with the coupon and if it didn't mean a savings of at least 60% or more, it didn't go into the cart.

Oh, I do hope they don't stop super double coupons. I'm really hooked now! The pictures of my goods are above - and if you're wondering about the dog items, those of you who know we don't have a dog - some went to Sam's family for their dog and some are for our neighbor's dog, whom we kind of adopted in a grandparent kind of way - we enjoy his company but he always goes back to his own home afterwards!

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

Look out Kmart!

Attention Kmart shoppers - you might want to stay home tomorrow 'cause I'm going to clean out the shelves and annoy people! Well, only those who have a problem with coupon-users. Let me explain. Kmart is having a "super double coupon" week right now where they will double coupons up to and including $2.00. How great is that?! Unfortunately, not all stores are participating. Here is a list where you can check if your local store will be participating. I had written to Kmart customer service last week and asked (before I got that handy list) and was told that my local Kmart was the only one in the area participating. I say again - How great is that?!

I went Sunday evening to "test the waters" and they are fine! There are rules to the event in that you are limited to using 10 coupons per transaction, so when I went Sunday I just wanted to see how things would work out, using just a few coupons that I had. I had never heard of, much less participated in, a super double coupon week before. Well, I am hooked now. My total for the items you see in the picture below came to $27.21. Then I handed over THE COUPONS. My total dropped to $6.06. For all that stuff you see. Yeah, I'm going back tomorrow!

Also, after reading some other people's blogs it seems that not all Kmarts are adhering to the 10-coupon rule, so I called my local one to ask and was told that there was no limit. The lady that I spoke with said, "If you have a cart full of stuff and a coupon for everything in that cart, we'll take them!" I hope I don't find out tomorrow that she was mistaken.

I promptly hung up and started cutting and organizing my coupons. I am sad, though, to learn that this will be the last super double coupon event indefinitely, and even if they do change their corporate minds, another one won't be forthcoming until sometime in 2010. Darn. I was just getting the hang of this, too. Well, there's always tomorrow. Literally!

Monday, August 31, 2009

My longsuffering hubby!

I just had to write and share what just happened to my poor hubby. After a 14-hour day today (leaving here at 4:00 AM and going straight to the job in Delaware), Jerry stopped at the ATM in Rehoboth to take money out of his business account and deposit it into our personal account for a payment that was automatically set to come out tomorrow. Let me start by stating that there is only one Bank of America ATM in all of Delaware. Anyway, he withdrew cash from his business account and then went to immediately put it into the other account.

The ATM came up with a message that it couldn't accept some of his cash. This was the cash that he had just gotten out of the ATM! He tried several times. He has had problems with this machine before but this time it was really being stubborn. I was on his truck phone with him the entire time. We would talk for a while and then he'd try the machine again. Finally, while we were still talking, I connected with Bank of America customer service online to try to get some help. Jerry stayed in the parking lot where the ATM was in case they could somehow help.

After waiting forever, I finally got a customer service representative who was, well, nicely put, incompetent. The messages typed back and forth went something like this:
Bank of America (BOA): How can I help you?

Me: My husband is out of state and trying to make a deposit at an ATM to cover a payment that will be automatically withdrawn from our personal account at midnight tonight. The ATM will not accept the cash deposit. Any suggestions?

BOA: (After a LONG wait for a response) You should not use non-Bank of America ATM's when out of the United States. You will need to use wire transfer when out of the country. (I am NOT making this up - this was the conversation).

Me: I didn't say he was out of the country; he is in Delaware and our accounts are in Maryland, and it is a Bank of America ATM!

BOA: What is your card number and I will look the transaction up for you.

Me: Card number? There was no transaction. The machine won't let him deposit cash to cover a payment that is coming out at midnight, and it's the only ATM in Delaware.

BOA: I need your card number to find out exactly why your transaction was denied.

Me: I don't think you understand - there WAS no transaction!

BOA: I will get my manager.

BOA manager: (After an interminable wait) Thank you for notifying us about the malfunctioning ATM machine at Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. We will try to have it fixed as soon as possible. Thank you for banking with Bank of America.

I did not make ANY of that up. That was the conversation. *Sigh*

Since I had been reading the responses the whole time to Jerry since we were still connected via his truck phone, I had gotten nearly to the end of that lopsided online conversation when he decided to call customer service from his cell phone. Finally, after a long wait and being transferred once, they took care of everything for us. They linked our business and personal accounts online (which they normally don't do) so that we could transfer money from account to account whenever we needed to and Jerry wouldn't have to stop at the ONLY ATM in the state to make these transfers anymore. So, finally, two hours later the problem got resolved. Breathing a heavy sigh of relief, Jerry left to go back to the trailer and get a good night's sleep.

Shortly after he left the parking lot we were talking about everything that had just happened when he said, "What the.........? What did I do?" He said a policeman was pulling him over. Then when he pulled over, he said a backup arrived. One police officer walked up to his driver side and the backup walked up to his passenger side, both shining flashlights into his truck. Since I was still on the truck phone, I heard the entire conversation. Turns out that several people had called and reported a suspicious person lurking at the ATM and in the shopping center parking lot for a couple of hours. When Jerry opened his glove box to get his registration out, the backup officer on the passenger side seemed awfully interested in shining his flashlight in the glove box - Jerry informed him that what he was looking at was Red Yeast Rice - an herbal cholesterol lowering medicine that I make him take! Jerry explained what had happened at the ATM and after checking his tags and license and such, they apologized and said that they had to follow up on it because they had gotten so many phone calls, wished him a good night and left. Has this guy had a bad evening or what?!

So, my poor hubby is an exhausted man, somewhat humiliated by being pulled over not only by one, but two police officers on Route 1, the main thoroughfare in Rehoboth Beach. All for trying to make a deposit at an ATM. Let this be a lesson to any readers - make your necessary deposits far ahead of schedule, don't linger in parking lots too long, and keep your Red Yeast Rice in plain view at all times!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Can it be? A new post from me?

Just a post to say that I am still kickin'! We have been busy around here. We rented a dumpster for three weeks that sat in our driveway, and boy did we fill it. We have been here 15 years and in that time have accumulated more stuff than anyone could ever possibly need.

I am very proud of ourselves, though. We got rid of stuff that we were hanging onto "just because." Not too long after I got married a great deal of my personal belongings got thrown away that were in my mother's house including love letters, poems and drawings by my husband, my high school yearbooks, years of journals, and other stuff that I didn't get out of my closet fast enough after I married and moved out. Because of that I have had a tendency to save EVERYTHING! I also tend to be sort of a "proxy saver" for the boys - I save stuff of theirs just in case they want it some day.

Well, we had a long discussion and I decided to let the boys decide for themselves what they deemed worthy of keeping, and to my surprise it was very little. I also decided that I didn't need to hold onto "stuff" anymore - I could keep the memories and get rid of the stuff. Some things just can't be replaced, like letters, drawings, yearbooks, but what I had here was WAY less important and so out it went. I even got rid of my depression glass dishes which I loved, but really had no place for. I kept thinking that "someday" I'd have a place for them. Well, while waiting for "someday", I wasn't living here, now - and they were taking up an awful lot of space. I must confess though, I did keep my Jadite pieces! I will FIND a place for them! I am very proud of all four of us. We got rid of years of accumulated junk and decided collectively that it was time to start fresh. I can't believe how much storage space we have now.

Andy and I have also been gearing up for this school year. We will be going to the next big book sale in September to round up the books we need for literature this year. We are studying British literature and need several classic books, all of which I'm sure I'll find at the book sale considerably less expensive than buying them new online. I love that book sale - yes, I got rid of a LOT of books in our massive cleanout. What I have left though are good ones and textbooks, some of which I have already listed and sold on eBay and have some still to list. So they won't be sitting around like they would have previously. But I can't help myself - I LOVE books! Homeschoolers can never have enough books.

Well, that's it for now. I can't promise when my next post will be, but I'll try to make it some time before the new year!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Swagbucks!

Okay, I am going to shamelessly plug something here. I have discovered Swagbucks. Basically, when you search something (through Google or Yahoo or whatever you usually use to search with) you can earn Swagbucks automatically. And then your Swagbucks are redeemable for your choice of goods. Personally, the one I'm going for is Amazon gift certificates. Every 45 Swagbucks is good for a $5.00 Amazon gift certificate. But there are lots of other things - too many to name here - to choose from. I have shamelessly put a block on the top right so that you can click on that and go directly to the site and sign up.

Now for full disclosure - I will get points when you sign up for Swagbucks - but I don't know who you are, what you search, or anything about you. Swagbucks does not disclose that - just adds matching points (for every point you get, I get one) to my account. If you have a blog yourself, or just want to email a referral address to your friends, you can do that too, and then you will get the matching points instead of me. This is not like a pyramid or anything like that! I've been watching this for a while and can honestly say that I'm okay with it. I have checked into it extensively and found that it is all above board, legal, and LOTS of companies participate now, so it's growing by leaps and bounds.

I have put a search engine block on my toolbar for Internet Explorer and on Firefox (yes, I use both - I prefer Firefox but my job software requires me to have IE), and whenever I'm working and need to search a medical term or something, I just use that. Just this afternoon on Firefox I searched "shaving a cat" - I'll explain in a moment - and it came up and said "Congratulations! You've just earned 1 Swagbuck!". Not bad for wanting to learn the proper way to shave a cat. Okay, now for the explanation - we have a longhaired cat who is shedding copiously, and because I'm still refusing to turn the air conditioning on yet, I think he'd be more comfortable with less fur. I was searching for info about it to make sure I wasn't going to make him psychologically unstable or anything. Well, more psychologically unstable. Anyhoo, he'll be more comfortable and won't require therapy because of it.

Well, guess I'd better go. Off to shave the cat, and we have a long day tomorrow that will start early - there's a huge book sale tomorrow with over 90,000 books that starts at 8:00 (I'll explain about that later), and then we're going to Jerry's mom's to shoot our potato gun - more space, ya know! If you don't hear from me for a while, the cat did NOT like being shaved, and I'm recuperating.

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Back Again

Wow - a month since I've blogged. Well, I'm not surprised anymore - and you probably aren't either! Just been busy, as usual. We built a potato gun this weekend. Doesn't everyone build one?! This is the coolest thing I have ever seen. We finally stopped shooting it because it sounds like a huge shotgun blast. Yes, it's that loud. We figured our little neighborhood wasn't the best place for it! We kept waiting for the police to arrive, but they never did. The videos do not do the potato gun justice as far as volume goes. Anyway, hope you enjoy our potato gun as much as we did!
video video

Sunday, May 03, 2009

A Great Vacation

Last week for Jerry's birthday we took a little vacation. Jerry's mom, Jerry, Andy and I rode the Cape May-Lewes ferry from Delaware to New Jersey, spent the day exploring New Jersey, and then rode the ferry back that night. I'll let the pictures tell most of the story, but suffice it to say we had a great time. We drove my truck onto the ferry because the shuttle buses don't start running until June and it's a six mile walk from the Cape May station to town. After we parked the truck on the deck of the ship, we returned to it a few times to get various things out of it (jackets, cameras), and it was a really weird feeling to be sitting in the vehicle while moving on a ship. We saw dolphins swimming by quite a few times. The four of us shared a hotel room in Rehoboth Beach. Jerry completely took off work and nobody knew he was in the vicinity (or if they did know, they didn't bother him!) It was only for three days, but what a great three days. Jerry and I climbed to the top of the lighthouse. Whew - 199 steps! But it was totally worth the climb to walk out on the top, feel the wind and see the spectacular views. We are definitely planning to go again. Here are some links to the fun stuff we did and saw:

Cape May-Lewes Ferry

Cape May Lighthouse

World War II Concrete Bunker

Naval Air Station, Wildwood, NJ

A view from the top of the lighthouse. If you click on the picture to enlarge it, look in the corner of the wooden walkway going out onto the beach - see the two people, one in a pink shirt and one in a black shirt? They are Jerry's mom and Andy waving to us while Jerry and I were at the top.


A really neat piece of history - a concrete bunker from World War II.

More of said bunker.

One of the views from the top of the lighthouse.


199 steps up to the top!


This is just one small part of the cockpit!


Naval Air Station, Wildwood, New Jersey.


We have new occupations! Oh, and I grew!

Here are our shadows while standing at the rail.


Water, water everywhere!


Happy sailors!


Here we are driving aboard the New Jersey.


The New Jersey.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

The Suspense Ends!

Okay, okay - my apologies for not updating sooner. I had my followup appointment last Friday and it turns out that they actually took out four polyps, but only biopsied three. Of those three, two were benign and harmless, but Ol' Ugly was sure enough adenomatous (precancerous). Thankfully the margins surrounding it were found to be clean and free of adenomatous cells. So, I was admonished to eat red meat as little as possible (because it evidently has been linked to cancer), avoid corn and seedy stuff (so as not to aggravate the diverticulosis), and have another colonoscopy in three years to make sure nothing is growing back.

I can't help wondering what might have happened if I had waited until I was 50. Precancerous cells are just that - pre cancer. They are in the process of mutating into cancer cells. What if I had waited?

Please, please, please go have a colonoscopy if you have not had one. For my brother and sister, the doc said to tell you that you NEED to have this done because of my findings. On the plus side, the doc says that if your insurance company balks at approving it because you're under 50, you can tell them (and it can be verified) that you now have a sibling who had an adenomatous polyp removed and generally that should be enough for approval before age 50.

Anyhoo, I'm in the middle of stuff right now, but I just wanted to take a moment to update. I'll write more when I can. Happy Tuesday!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

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